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Tag Archive: White Ribbon Day

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MENding CamBRIDGE: How One Local Men’s Group Is Redefining Masculinity

City of Cambridge



For Liz Speakman, healthy masculinity is something that she thinks about every single day.

As the Domestic and Gender-Based Violence Prevention Initiative Coordinator for the City of Cambridge, her job requires it. As importantly, she is a mother to a three-year old son. Reflecting on a conversation shared with her husband the previous night, Speakman divulges, “My three-year old has a little mermaid costume that has sparkles all over it and firefighter boots. So he runs around the house in his mermaid costume and firefighter boots. We love that. How do we help him have a sturdy foundation where he knows that he is loved and accepted for the whole of who he is and that he can hold on to that when he is faced with a world that is going to tell him otherwise?”


White Ribbon Day is Buzzing in Lowell thanks to the Center for Hope and Healing!


The Center for Hope and Healing

Through years of prevention work, The Center for Hope and Healing has realized that the fight to end gender based violence is not a one issue problem. They believe in an intersectionality approach that considers how institutional racism, sexism, and class inequality all contribute to the pervasiveness of gender based violence. This type of thinking is progressive and actually tackling all these daunting issues at once is difficult. But The Center for Hope and Healing is up for the task.


Reimaging Manhood

A Guest Blog by Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian. Peter is the co-chair of Ma White Ribbon Day 2016. Peter K

As a prosecutor, legislator and now as Sheriff, I have seen firsthand the horrific results of gender-based violence.

I’ve prosecuted those accused of sexual assault, sponsored legislation to provide victims of stalking more tools to protect themselves, and held in my custody hundreds of men accused and convicted of unspeakable acts of domestic violence. But it’s not enough to pass laws and prosecute offenders after the fact – we need to do more to prevent violence from ever occurring in the first place.


Gender-Based Violence Framework Helps Broaden Vision for the Massachusetts White Ribbon Day Campaign

Update - JDI has reworked the pledge language slightly to continue to articulate our analysis and commitment to ending men’s violence against women as well as all gender-based violence. We heard from many who appreciate the broader platform of GBV for the reasons articulated below. We also heard from others who want to be crystal clear that this campaign continues to invite men and boys to address violence against women – from rape and sexual harassment to domestic violence. By combining these terms, we aim to both be inclusive and specific at the same time. We appreciate the feedback and welcome a continued dialogue about the mission and vision of the Massachusetts WRD.


Men’s Engagement on the Vineyard


Each year, Vineyard and visiting men are invited to stand on the seawall stretching across the shore of Martha’s Vineyard in honor of a woman they care about - a visual demonstration of their commitment to supporting an end to violence against all women. At the Annual Seawall Event, a men’s initiative, men of all ages, races, and backgrounds, stand on the seawall in solidarity with those affected by sexual and domestic violence, offering support and making a visible and proud statement much like the seawall itself. Each man, holds a poster with the name of a woman he wished to honor etched across it, sends a message that there is a reason for men to care about violence toward women; that it is not a women’s issue, but a human issue.


White Ribbon Day Reflections

I barely had time to catch my breath after last week’s White Ribbon Day Proclamation Event before hopping on a train to New York for The Center for Study of Men and Masculinities' International Conference. Riding the four-hour train into Manhattan provided me the perfect opportunity to reflect on that afternoon. Days later, it is even more clear to me that the momentum for this work is building as the inquiries, calls, emails and activity continues.


Each of Us Can Do Something

A Guest Blog by David Sullivan, Northwestern District Attorney. David is the co-chair of Massachusetts White Ribbon Day 2015.

David Sullivan The walk down the long corridor of the Hampshire Probate & Family Court ended at my office. Right next door was the Safe Plan office, a place dedicated to helping victims of domestic violence seek protection from an abusive current or former partner. On too many occasions, I saw mothers with their young children playing with a toy or filling out a coloring book. It made me sad, it made me angry, it woke me up to the fact that domestic violence really existed in my community. It was a daily walk I took for 8 years as the Chief Administrator for the family court. But my walk was so much easier than the journey each of these victims took to seek help for themselves and their children.


Why I Chose to Get Involved

A Guest Blog by Peter Roby, Athletic Director, Northeastern University. Peter is the co-chair of Massachusetts White Ribbon Day 2015.

Peter Roby Why would a college athletic director be involved in the Massachusetts White Ribbon Day campaign? Does sport have any role to play in finding solutions to ending violence against women? Isn't the culture of sport responsible for all the negative behavior by athletes we read about in the media? These are all appropriate questions and deserve thoughtful responses. Let me give it a try.

I have taken the pledge to be a part of the solution to end violence against women and my occupation is helpful in raising awareness of others. As an athletic director, I view the athletic experience of our students as an extension of the learning done in the classroom. In fact, one of our core values is Coach-as-Educator. Our pursuit of competitive excellence must be balanced by our commitment to providing students a quality education. It is not only my personal desire to be part of any solution to end violence against women; I also view my role as Athletic Director as an incredible opportunity to promote and encourage values of kindness, respect, and empathy to our students and the broader community. My role as a citizen and member of this community is more than enough reason to care.


On Super Bowl Sunday Root for Team White Ribbon

This year presents one of the best opportunities we have ever had to discuss positive masculinity on Super Bowl Sunday. With the highly visible Ray Rice case (and the situation’s handling by the NFL) and with the national call to action to end sexual violence on campuses; awareness and readiness to talk among men is at an all-time high.

Let’s take advantage of this moment! Whether you’ve never watched the game, or you would never miss the game, THIS is the year to watch with friends. I want to help you get prepared to ask a few questions and have a good conversation.


The Benefit of Being a Good Sport

Sports and violence have been all over the news this year; leading fans and athletes alike to be confronted by it. In December, JDI’s quarterly Men’s Leadership Roundtable series focused on the field of sports as it relates to solutions to men’s violence. The robust conversation, led by Dr. Stephen W. Jefferson, a Lecturer at UMass Amherst delved into how sportsmanship and the development of positive character have has long been an over-arching goals in sports – youth sports in particular. Calling upon the voices of local men, Dr. Jefferson helped to piece together the connections between the character building qualities of team sports and community. Evidence and experience suggest that sport programs have the power to cultivate admirable characteristics like a collaborative spirit, strong communication, commitment, goal setting, and ethical decision-making skills.