Rugby team join up with local domestic violence charity Calan DVS to support the White Ribbon Campaign (WRC).
This follows evidence that there is a connection between competitive sports events and incidents of domestic violence.
The WRC is a global campaign to ensure men take more responsibility for reducing the level of violence against women.
It has been launched ahead of the Six Nations Championships in order to draw attention to the issue of domestic abuse in Wales, and follows recent research by Durham University ‘End violence against women’ which highlighted the connection between competitive events such as international football matches and incidents of domestic violence.
Rhian Bowen-Davies, manager of Calan DVS, said:
Domestic abuse knows no boundaries and can affect anyone regardless of age, sexuality, ethnicity or background.
A Keighley rugby club has also been supporting the fight against domestic violence. As well as supporting 2 cancer charities, the Worth Village Rugby Club also promoted ‘Justice for Jane’, a campaign highlighting domestic violence following the murder of Jane Clough in Blackpool in 2010.
The key findings from the research were that excessive alcohol consumption is a key contributory factor to the violence and this is made particularly dangerous when coupled with extreme competitive tensions and the group atmosphere that major events are generally watched in.
Sports-related violence against women occurs in a range of settings as well, such as homes, pubs, clubs and public spaces.
The Home Office has expressed its concern:
Major sporting events do not cause domestic violence, as perpetrators are responsible for their actions, but the levels of alcohol consumption linked to the highly charged emotional nature of these events seem to increase the prevalence of such incidents.
Ahead of the Rugby World Cup this September, Cllr Richard Hobbs, portfolio holder for community protection said:
Of the 7000 reported cases of domestic violence reported to Warwickshire Police each year, around half involve alcohol.
Consider also that sporting events increase alcohol consumption and make for a highly-charged atmosphere, with emotions running high and it is not hard to see why the Home Office becomes concerned about domestic violence around the periods when major sporting events are taking place.
We urge people to come forward and get help if they are the victim of domestic violence or are particularly intimidated when their partners drink excessively. It is important that they call 999 and act quickly as alcohol causes a loss of inhibition and violence can very quickly spiral out of control.