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Women in Rail teams up with Saltley Stallions to support #TheGoal for White Ribbon Day

Women in Rail (WR) has joined forces with the Saltley Stallions football club to show their support of #TheGoal campaign for White Ribbon Day.

Both the men’s and women’s teams at Birmingham-based Saltley Stallions will fly the flag for the campaign which aims to end violence against women.

White Ribbon is the UK’s leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls. It does this by addressing its root causes.

The aim is to change long established, and harmful, attitudes, systems and behaviours around masculinity that perpetuate gender inequality and men’s violence against women.

This year, White Ribbon Day will be held on Friday, November 25, which falls on the same week as the start of the FIFA men’s World Cup. #TheGoal brings men and boys together to think about how they can make a positive difference to achieve equality and safety for women and girls.

This partnership brings together White Ribbon UK’s work with men and boys to promote gender equality, to end violence against women. Saltley Stallions focus on culture change to make football accessible for women and WR’s drive to bring greater equality, diversity and inclusion across the rail industry.

Rajinder Pryor MBE, WR Trustee , a diversity and inclusion advocate and White Ribbon Champion said the partnership brings “huge” opportunities to open up the conversation around violence against women across different areas where greater change is required.

She said: “We hope this will be the start of a long standing  relationship moving forward.

“WR have linked up with women in football to unite and send a clear message to men that unacceptable behaviours and any sort of violence against women will be called out.”

Rajinder described WR, Saltley Stallions and the White Ribbon campaign as a “perfect fit” for each other.

She said: “WR has challenged the rail industry being a male dominated environment, with the aim of getting more women and other under-represented groups into the sector.

“Similarly, football is also an area which is male dominated and is looking  to try and get more women into football. 

“Additionally, WR launched the ‘Equality Diversity and Inclusion Charter’ together with the Rail Industry Association now reaching 200 company signatories.

“The EDI Charter is a commitment to collaboratively  build a more balanced higher performing sector addressing areas of ethnicity and equality.

“One of the reasons Saltley Stallions was created was to give Muslim women a safe space to play football. By partnering with the Saltley Stallions it’s also a great opportunity to shout about the railway industry too and promote  it is a great place for women to forge a career across communities.”

Yasmin Nessa, cofounder of Saltley Stallions Women’s team said: “Addressing gender-inequality has been a long-standing objective of the women’s team from the very onset.

“We recognise that there are barriers which stop women from enjoying life to the fullest, which includes taking part in football and sports, for a healthy and balanced life.

“Partnering with White Ribbon & Network Rail is the next step for us in using football to support communities further in creating safe spaces for women and girls.” 

Obayed Hussain, Chairman at Saltley Stallions said: “As an organisation, we’re committed to embedding equality across everything we do, and that starts with challenging perceptions and narratives around gender, which harm women and girls in our community.”

Anthea Sully, Chef Executive, White Ribbon UK said: “Whether it be on the football pitch or a train platform, women and girls must feel safe in public spaces every day, and all of us have a part to play in ensuring that.

“This White Ribbon Day, we are very excited to partner with Women in Rail and Saltley Stallions to turn traditionally male-dominated contexts into more inclusive spaces where women and girls can thrive.”

#TheGoal calls on people to make the White Ribbon Promise, never to use, excuse or remain silent about violence against women and girls. 

The Promise can be made on White Ribbon UK’s website www.whiteribbon.org.uk/whiteribbonday2

#TheGoal will run throughout the 16 days of activism against gender-based violence up until the end of the FIFA men’s World Cup tournament on 18th December.

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