206 people lobby 65 MPs to Stop Violence Against Women
Last week, we held a mass lobby of parliament – demanding that all women in the UK are given equal access to refuges and support services.
Hundreds of you joined us at the House of Commons to meet your MP in person and ask for their commitment to making this happen. Hundreds others emailed or tweeted their MPs instead. We still need your voice on this and it’s not too late for you to take part – email or tweet your MP on this issue
The pressure is working – Amnesty has just cautiously welcomed the Home Office’s three-month pilot scheme to grant women facing violence and who have insecure immigration status the ability to access a refuge and seek specialised support. Read the press release
How it went at the House of Commons
260 supporters signed up to meet their MPs in person on 4 November, covering some 65 MPs between them - a great turn out! However, we do know that 3 people couldn’t come because they were busy trying to resolve 3 complex cases where women have no access to refuges and support services – showing the real and current impact of this issue upon women’s lives.
On the 4 November, a few of us went down to the House of Commons to support the activists. Some were understandably nervous about meeting their MP for the first time and confronting them on issues around violence against women in the UK – but everyone was determined to get the message across that all women in the UK need support and protection from violence, regardless of their immigration status.
We blogged live from the lobby, with each post describing the experience of an individual supporter who met with their MP. If you’d like to get a read about how the lobby went for different people, talking to various MPs from across the political spectrum, have a look at this blog
We also managed to get a few supporters on camera, telling us how their meetings with their MPs went. Watch the video below to hear from one of the activists at the lobby.
More video footage from the lobby will be available to view soon.
We weren’t the only people at the lobby filming; Guardian video came down too, to interview some women who have suffered violence and not had access to refuges. Watch their footage
Lots of you tweeted your MPs and discussed the issue on Twitter, using the hashtag #masslobby.
All in all…
The Lobby was a great success in terms of how many people contacted their MPs, bringing to their attention the plight of women who have no acess to support services and refuges in the UK – and demanding that something is done about it.
More videos and pictures from the day will be available soon. In the meantime, your support is crucial – so if you haven’t done so already, email or tweet your MP on this issue
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.