‘ONLY losers give bruises’, says domestic violence campaign

Council Leader Paul Watson and councillors at the launch of the Wearside Women in Need/Gentoo campaign bus, which willl be touring the city.

Council Leader Paul Watson and councillors at the launch of the Wearside Women in Need/Gentoo campaign bus, which willl be touring the city.

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“ONLY losers give bruises.”

That was the message from campaigners as they launched their tough talking, week-long drive to tackle teenage domestic violence.

A bus will be stopping off at various areas of the city to spread its hard-hitting message.

The Wearside Women in Need (WWIN) and gentoo campaign is this year targeting teenagers who suffer at the hands of their partners.

Claire Phillipson, WWIN director, said: “We are trying to get the message across to teenagers that domestic violence is unacceptable.

“Teenagers are often starting out in relationships and often don’t know what is acceptable and unacceptable and we want to make sure they know.

“We are also targeting parents, teachers and youth workers and asking them to keep an eye on teenagers.

“All the research shows that young people experience domestic violence and will talk to a friend but not their parents or teachers.

“They are absolutely suffering in silence and nobody is noticing what’s going on.”

The city-wide domestic bus was launched from Sunderland Civic Centre and will be stopping off at Ryhope Village Green, the Stadium of Light, Bunny Hill Centre, Washington Galleries and Doxford Park.Staff will be on hand to offer advice and provide information.

Michelle Meldrum, gentoo Sunderland deputy director, said: “Domestic abuse is not a new form of abuse and the time for it being tolerated has long gone.

“We are pleased to be involved in this campaign and will continue to work with our partners in the future to tackle this issue.

“By raising awareness and providing help and support to victims, together we can make a real difference.”

Coun Kathryn Rolph, chairman of Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership, said: “I wholeheartedly back the Only Losers Give Bruises campaign in its drive to raise awareness of domestic abuse and in tackling attitudes around teenage relationship abuse across the city.”

To find out where in the city the bus will be this week as well as the work that is being carried out to help victims of domestic violence, Wearsiders can visit Facebook.

And they are being urged to follow and like the page Follow the DV Bus on the social networking website.

Twitter: @sunechocrime