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FIFA launches Safe Home campaign to support domestic violence victims

FIFA has joined forces with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Commission to promote the Safe Home campaign, supporting those at risk of domestic violence.

It follows a recent spike in domestic violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made many nations announce stay-at-home orders to its citizens with women and children at a particular risk.

Almost one in three women worldwide experience physical and/or sexual violence by a partner or by someone else in their lifetime.

In the majority of those cases, it is committed by a partner in the home with up to 38 per cent of all murders of women being carried out by an intimate partner.

It is also estimated that one billion children aged between two and 17, around half the world’s children, have experienced physical, sexual or emotional abuse or neglect over the past year.

The three bodies are looking to raise awareness of the issue which differs in severity from nation to nation based on social norms, gender inequality and childhood experiences passed down through the generations.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino spoke of his support of the project.

He said: “Together with the WHO and the European Commission, we are asking the football community to raise awareness to this intolerable situation that threatens particularly women and children in their own home, a place where they should feel happy, safe and secure.

“We cannot stay silent on this issue that negatively affects so many people.

“Violence has no place in homes, just as it has no place in sports.

“Football has the power to relay important social messages, and through the Safe Home campaign, we want to ensure that those people experiencing violence have access to the necessary support services they need.”

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of WHO, added: “Just as physical, sexual or psychological violence has no place in football, it has no place in the home.

“We are so pleased that our partners today are joining us to draw attention to this critical issue.

“As people are isolated at home because of COVID-19, the risks of domestic violence have tragically been exacerbated.”

A five-part video awareness campaign features 15 past and present footballers, including Spanish defender Alvaro Arbeloa, former Portugal goalkeeper Vítor Baía and former Italian defender Marco Materazzi.

read also:$500,000 FIFA funds not Covid 19 Palliative – Akinwunmi

In the United Kingdom, the domestic violence supports charity Refuge has reported that traffic to its site has increased by 957 percent over the past two weeks, while calls have increased by 66 percent over the past three consecutive weeks during the lockdown period.

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