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Church leaders pledge support to sexual assault victims

by Tola Mbakwe

Ven Jo Kelly-Moore, Archdeacon of Canterbury joined Rt Rev Simon Burton-Jones, Bishop of Tonbridge at an event in  Chatham this week to support to the White Ribbon campaign.

White Ribbon UK was founded in 2005 and is part of the global movement to end male violence against women.

On Monday, alongside partners in the Diocese of Rochester, Canterbury Diocese officially signed up to promote the cause and raise awareness of the issue.

Every week in the UK, two women are killed by their partners or ex-partners and 7 out of 8 victims of domestic violence are women. Also, more than half of the women in the UK have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace.

Ven Kelly-Moore said: "It is vital that we give this campaign the full weight of our support.

"Getting people talking, getting people to take responsibility for themselves and for their peers is such a positive way to tackle this problem that affects so many lives.

"I was moved by those I spoke to at the event in Chatham; their bravery, their hope and their determination to stop this happening to others. We need to reach out and be part of that conversation; in our families, in our congregations and be aware of the strength it takes to take that first step and have that first chat."

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