In 2016 then Member of Parliament (MP) Dr Eilidh Whiteford was given a one-off chance to change the law in Westminster, the UK Parliament. She used this opportunity to push the UK Government to make something called the Istanbul Convention into law.
The Istanbul Convention is probably the very best piece of violence against women policy that has been written ever, anywhere. Governments that sign to the Istanbul Convention sign up to provide an agreed minimum level of support for women and children experiencing domestic abuse and other gender based violence. The Convention gives charities and organisations like ours the legal tools we need to hold governments to account, so we can make sure there are good resources and support for women and children experiencing violence and abuse.
We teamed up with campaign group IC Change and the other Women’s Aid federations in Wales, Northern Ireland and England to show just how important the Istanbul Convention is.
[See full gallery of our infographic project below]
Basically, we think of the Istanbul Convention as a blueprint for how we move from small change at the corners, services that are picking up too few people, too late, to a system that is designed to end domestic abuse and violence against women.
We were part of a dynamic force that put pressure on MPs to show up and vote to #ChangeHerStory. On June 28th 2017 the UK Government announced that it will take the final step needed so that the Istanbul Convention can be ratified.
It’s not over yet; we’ll be following updates closely to make sure that the UK Government keep their promise and work to protect women, children and young people from domestic abuse. Watch this space.