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West Lothian backs action against gender-based violence

West Lothian Council is supporting the 16 days of action campaign to tackle gender-based violence in our society.

A special march has been organised at 10.30am on Friday 8 December at Howden Park Centre to mark the campaign, which runs from International Women's Day on Saturday 25 November and International Human Rights Day on Sunday 10 December.

Everyone is invited to join the march, which will make its way from Howden Park Centre to West Lothian Civic Centre, followed by speeches and refreshments.

A series of multi-agency events involving West Lothian Council, Police Scotland and West Lothian Women's Aid have also been arranged during the 16 days, including training sessions, school activities and awareness-raising stalls at The Centre in Livingston.

West Lothian Women's Aid have also launched a new website to mark 16 days of action at West Lothian Women's Aid.

Depute Leader of West Lothian Council Kirsteen Sullivan said: "I'm delighted that West Lothian will host our first ever 16 Days of Action march, which will mark the end of a series of events raising awareness about violence against women and girls.

"Violence against women is a violation of human rights, and events in West Lothian are amongst those taking place all over world to tackle the issue. Within West Lothian, partner agencies are committed to working together towards our shared goal challenging and eliminating violence against women and girls from our society.

"I hope as many women, men and children as possible can come along to the march on Friday 8 December to show their solidarity on this vital issue. In West Lothian we are committed to ensuring our communities are safe places, offering improved life chances for all and a better quality of life for everyone."

Chief Inspector Liz Macleod, Local Area Commander for West Lothian, said: "This is a great opportunity for the people of West Lothian to come together to show their support in raising awareness about violence against women and girls. 

"Your support can influence and affect change to improve opportunities for women and children in West Lothian to seek safety and advice."

Help is available for anyone experience gender-based violence through the specialists in the council's Domestic and Sexual Assault Team (DASAT). Please call 01506 281055 or email dasat@westlothian.gov.uk for confidential and friendly support.

In an emergency, always call the police on 999.

Other useful telephone numbers

West Lothian Women's Aid - 01506 413721

Victim Support - 01506 635050

Domestic Abuse Helpline - 0800 027 1234

Childline - 8088 1111

Shakti Women's Aid - 0131 475 2399

Family Mediation Lothian - 0131 226 4507

Edinburgh Women's Rape & Sexual Assault Centre - 0131 556 9437

SCET (Social Work Emergency Team - Out of Hours Service) - 01506 281028 or 281029

West Lothian Council Housing - 01506 280000

Domestic Abuse Liaison Officer - 01506 833834

Breathing Space - 0800 838587 (Lines open Monday-Thursday, 6pm to 2am and Friday 6pm to Monday 6am)

Rape Crisis Helpline - 08088 01 03 02 (Lines open 7 days from 6pm to midnight).

Police Scotland can be contacted on 999 in an emergency, or 101 .