Footballers in the Hearts vs Hibs new year derby match will today wear white ribbons as part of a new campaign to halt domestic violence.
All frontline Lothian and Borders Police officers will also wear white ribbons, and campaign messages will be sent out via Bluetooth to mobile phones in the stadium and the immediate area.
The campaign will also feature on the stadium’s LCD screen, the match programme, and posters and postcards distributed nearby.

Designed to make men think about how their actions influence the actions of their children, the campaign features a father and son playing football, and has the slogan: “You’re his role model. Teach him violence against women is never OK.”

Created in conjunction with White Ribbon Scotland – the Scottish organisation which forms part of the global campaign to get men to take more responsibility for reducing the level of violence against women – the new push encourages men not to commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women.
Approximately 5% of all annual domestic abuse incidents force-wide are reported between December 24 and January 4, reaching a high on New Year’s Day.

Inspector Paul Matthews said: “It’s a harsh fact, but call-outs for domestic abuse traditionally peak on New Year’s Day. Alcohol and post-Christmas stress both play their part, although every situation is different.
Hearts manager Jim Jefferies, said: “Hearts is proud to support this campaign, particularly at our biggest match of the season. Any act of violence is cowardly, and we’re very enthusiastic and strong as a club in supporting this very important message.”

Hibs manager Colin Calderwood said: “Any form of violence against women should not be tolerated – it is not acceptable behaviour – and hopefully our involvement will have a positive impact on getting that message across.”

Callum Hendry, Campaign Co-ordinator for the White Ribbon Scotland campaign, said: “This is a great opportunity to get the message out to an audience of thousands of men and boys that violence against women is unacceptable, and that they can play a significant part in its prevention.”

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