Reclaim the Night is a global movement that began in Leeds in the UK in 1977. At that time, a massive man hunt was on for the Yorkshire Ripper, a serial killer who attacked women and girls initially in residential areas before turning his attention to women in red light districts.
He was eventually caught in the early 1980’s and was convicted of 13 murders and 7 attempted murders. During this period the police response was that women should not be out after dark unless necessary which partly led to the very first Reclaim the Night, an all female march protesting against sexual violence against women as well as advocating for the rights of women to be able to move around public spaces without being harmed.
Since then, Reclaim the Night has evolved to be a protest against all forms of violence against women and for the rights of women to be safe not only in public places but also in their workplaces and in their own homes. Reclaim the Night is now held globally including here in Australia and involves both women and men marching down the main street of their suburbs or towns before returning to the nearest park for speeches and a rally.
This year will be the first year that Reclaim the Night will be held here in the Hills and it is our chance as a community to come together, to march for change and for an end to domestic violence in the Hills.
Like all communities, the Hills is not immune from domestic violence with the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research data reporting 325 domestic violence related assaults in the Hills from January to December 2022, an increase of 10.6% since 2018.
Domestic violence is no longer a private matter within families, it is a whole of community problem and is only getting worse with one woman killed every week in Australia by a current or former partner. Something has to change. Reclaim the Night is an opportunity to call for change but also to be a voice for those who cannot speak or who have been silenced.
Reclaim the Night – the Hills will be held 1 December meeting at Arthur Whitling Park at 5:30pm before marching down Main Street before returning to Arthur Whitling Park for speeches and a BBQ. A huge thank you to the Hills Soroptimists and Castle Hill Rotary for their assistance in establishing and running this event as well as to the Castle Hill Police and the Hills DV Prevention Network for their support.
Working together we can reduce domestic and family violence in the Hills. To register to attend Reclaim the Night – The Hills go to https://events.humanitix.com/reclaim-the-night-the-hills-2023 or for more information follow the Reclaim the Night – The Hills Facebok page.