In celebrating this year’s occasion of International Women’s Day, fast-moving consumer goods manufacturer, Unilever has called for an end to rising cases of domestic violence, just as it encouraged victims to speak out .
Speaking while marking the IWD, Executive Vice President, Marketing and Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer of Unilever, Aline Santos stated that the organisation hinged its focus on the menace of Domestic violence in order to raise a voice for victims, while ensuring that the anti-human act loses its ground.
He said, “Ensuring that victims of abuse are seen and heard is the focus of our actions marking this year’s International Women’s Day. We #ChooseToChallenge the silence on domestic violence.”
Meanwhile, it has been estimated that cases of domestic violence increased by 20% around the globe during the lockdown, a figure which prompted the United Nations to term the scourge as ‘shadow pandemic’.
Statistics from United Nations has equally shown that prior to COVID-19, 35 percent of women worldwide have experienced either physical or sexual intimate partner violence, or non-partner sexual violence, with 60% of all cases going unreported and unheard.
In tackling the menace, Santos added, “At the top of the list is a significant first for our business. We are offering other organisations access to our Global Domestic Violence and Abuse Policy and the measures we have put in place to support colleagues who have experienced abuse.
“We hope that by sharing what we have learnt shaping our policies, it will help employers that currently don’t have anything in place.”
Speaking further on the IWD, Human Resources Director, Unilever Ola Ehinmoro stated that the organisation is launching #Unmute – an external campaign urging action to end the silence on domestic violence.
She said, “This includes a short film and a filter offering our followers on social media the option to hit the #Unmute button on a post and add a selfie showing support for Unilever’s call to end the silence on domestic violence.
“Sometimes the thing that stops us from speaking out is that we feel unsure how to help out or how to ask for help. To provide colleagues with resources and direction, four in-depth training modules that demonstrate how to identify domestic abuse, provide insight on how to help someone and give examples of how to stay safe are now available in nine different languages via Degreed.”