Philippa writes about Refuge’s shocking new campaign to raise awareness of how many women cover up the fact that they are experiencing domestic abuse.
Refuge have launched a shocking campaign to raise awareness of the number of women who are affected by domestic violence and cover it up. In combination with make-up artist Lauren Luke, they created a frightening and unsettling video in which Lauren demonstrates how to cover up cuts and bruises after an assault by a partner.
Refuge explained that,
“Lauren Luke has a huge online following of teenage girls and young women. Research shows that abuse in teenage relationships is alarmingly common, and Refuge believes that much more work needs to be done to reach this group and educate them about domestic violence. A survey undertaken by Refuge and YouGov in 2009 revealed that over half of young women aged 18-21 had experienced at least one abusive incident from a boyfriend, husband or partner. Despite this, only 41% said that they would know where to go for help if they experienced domestic violence”.
Refuge have also shared some shocking statistics about abuse of teenage girls and young women:
- Over half of young women aged 18-21 reported experiencing at least one abusive incident from a boyfriend, husband or partner in a 2009 Refuge and YouGov survey
- 2011 research by Bristol University and the NSPCC showed that over half of teenage girls aged 13-18 had experienced sexual violence in their relationships and considered it to be normal
- In a 2009 NSPCC survey, one quarter of girls aged 13-17 reported experiencing intimate partner violence; one in nine female respondents had experienced severe physical violence; and almost three quarters of girls had experienced emotional abuse
- A 2005 NSPCC and Sugar magazine survey showed that 40% of teenage girls would consider giving their boyfriend another chance if he hit them, and one third said that cheating justified the use of violence
- According to the British Crime Survey 2011, almost 13% of women aged 16-19 experience domestic violence, making female teenagers the group most at risk of domestic violence
If you want to help to raise awareness of how many women hide their experiences of domestic abuse, or to campaign for better provision and services, you can:
- Share this blog post and video on Twitter, Facebook and your personal networks with the hashtag #dontcoveritup
- Sign this petition calling for more services
- To make a donation of £2 to this campaign (to represent the two women a week who are killed by partners or ex-partners), text ‘LUKE05 £2’ to 70070.
Above all, seek help if you need it. Refuge and Women’s Aid run the 24 hour National Domestic Violence helpline on 0808 2000 247.
Don’t cover it up.
[The image is a photograph of make-up artist Lauren Luke covering up bruises around her eyes with foundation]