Sunderland must prove it does not put dog mess ahead of domestic violence

Domestic violence illustration.
Domestic violence illustration.
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Have your say

Do we care more about cleaning up dog mess than we do victims of domestic violence?

The question has been raised by Wearside Women in Need director Clare Phillipson as her organisation faces closure if feared cuts go ahead.

She said: “Someone told us that voters care more about dog poo bins than victims of domestic violence.”

Do we care more about dog mess than victims of domestic violence? The answer, we would hope, is a resounding no. But we understand her frustration.

Dog mess, potholes, litter on the streets are all highly visible problems in our community and, as such, are part of our everyday conversation.

Domestic violence is a hidden problem. It is rarely discussed. Out of sight, is out of mind.

Which is why it is vital we let our voices be heard to protect the future of Wearside Women in Need.

The organisation runs four houses across the city providing a haven for women and children fleeing abusive partners. These homes are never empty.

Wearside women in need provide support and shelter for more than 350 women and children every year.

Unlike overflowing bins or graffiti in our community, it is an issue rarely discussed, because it is rarely seen. The perpetrators of domestic violence like to keep it that way.

The victims are often too scared to speak out.

Wearside Women in Need not only gives these people help and support, they also give them a voice.

They deal with fear every day, which is why it is disturbing to read that they now fear for their own future.

Do we care more about dog mess than the victims of domestic violence?

The answer should not be given in hushed tones, but delivered loud and clear. We care, and we want this organisation to stay.

Show your support and sign the petition today.