Cook Islands Tourism’s Metua Vaiimene said domestic violence hurt productivity in the tourism industry, so the country needed to stamp it out, “not just for human rights, but also because it makes economic sense.”
Vaiimene said Cook Islands Tourism marched in support of the campaign, and Internal Affairs as partner of the Vaka Pride competition.
One visitor to the island, Marilou Crequer, saw the Big Bike rally riders on Wednesday afternoon and was overwhelmed. As a member of the Zonta club of Christchurch – which is about women helping women – she is a big supporter of White Ribbon’s leadership among men.
“We are professional women helping to empower women through service and advocacy,” she said. “Ribbon is about men supporting men – we are all supporting the same cause of ending violence.”
The White Ribbon campaign was formed in 1991 by Canadian men, as a response to the Ecole Polytechnique massacre of 14 female students in 1989. Active in more than 60 countries, it is a global movement of men and boys working to end male violence against women and girls.
The movement is intended to raise awareness male violence against women, and to promote healthy relationships and gender equity.
Men and boys are encouraged to wear white ribbons as a symbol of their opposition to violence against women.
This morning from 10am, White ribbon messages will be promoted at the Punanga Nui market.
Don’t miss out tonight’s free family concert from 5.30pm, at Te Ara Maeva Nui constitution park area (opposite the Avarua catholic cathedral) that will have food stalls, music and fun performances hosted by “the laughing Samoan” Tofiga Fepulea’i.