Town of Claremont Mayor Jock Barker joined administration staff in Claremont Park this week to paint a purple bench, supporting victims of domestic violence.
The bench has been painted as part of the nationwide Purple Bench Project, an initiative that has been running for two years to honour those who have been affected by domestic violence.
Mayor Barker said it was a sobering reminder of the prevalence of domestic violence in the community.
“The bench aims to raise awareness of family and domestic violence and the Town is proud to be able to be a part of such a powerful message,” Mayor Barker said. “This really is a permanent reminder to all, that advice and support is available.”
The Women’s Council for Domestic and Family Violence Services (WCDFVS) Acting Chief Executive Officer Kedy Kristal said the Purple Bench Project provided an opportunity for organisations across WA to provide an ongoing visual reminder of the prevalence of domestic and family violence and its consequences within the community.
“Since March 2018 when our project commenced, 78 purple benches have been installed,” Ms Kristal said. “With a further 14 in the planning stages, we are nearing the significant milestone of 100 benches in WA.”
“Each purple bench has a plaque honouring all victims of Domestic and Family Violence Homicide and provides help numbers for victims,” Ms Kristal said.
The project has taken place during the 16 Days in WA to Stop Violence Against Women
which runs from 25 November 2020 (International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) until Thursday 10 December 2020 (Human Rights Day).
A plaque in honour of victims of domestic homicide will be installed at the bench on Human Rights Day next week.
To further support victims of domestic violence, the proceeds of the sales of candles purchased at the Town’s Le Parc Lumiere Christmas Carols on Sunday 13 December 2020 will be going towards the Salvation Army’s domestic violence homes in Karratha and Highgate. Patrons can visit their stall and make a gold coin donation for a candle and carols program.
- The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) reports that in Australia one woman is killed every nine days and one man is killed every 29 days by a current or former partner.
- During the 2019/2020 financial year, 15 people were killed as a result of domestic and family violence in Western Australia.
- The first ever purple bench was installed in 2015 to mark the 25th anniversary of the murder of Barb Baillie by her husband in Nova Scotia, Canada. Purple was chosen as it is associated worldwide with the Domestic Violence awareness movement.
- Since its inception, many thousands of benches have been installed worldwide.