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Byron Shire
April 23, 2021

Over 100 walk against domestic violence in Ballina

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Walkers gather in Ballina before Rotary’s walk to end domestic violence. Photo David Lowe.

Early risers in Ballina on Saturday morning would have noticed a large group of people walking beside the river and over the bridge to the Marine Rescue Tower, many dressed in purple. This was Rotary Ballina’s walk against domestic violence.

The walk also commemorated one hundred years of Australian Rotary. Ballina on Richmond Rotary’s President Dave Harmon proudly led the walk with his family, carrying the Centenary Baton.

The walk started in Captain Cook Park, after a breakfast hosted by The Cove Ballina.

Inspirational stuff

Ballina Shire Mayor David Wright with some of the walkers on Saturday. Photo David Lowe.

Mayor David Wright said the walk was in a very good cause, and thanked Rotary for inspiring the community, with people of all ages showing up for the walk.

He said volunteering and helping others was a very important part of Australian life.

‘This issue of domestic violence is the biggest issue we have,’ said Mayor Wright. He spoke about police and other groups taking a pro-active role locally. ‘I’m proud to see Ballina is leading the way in doing something about it.’ he said.

‘Lucky it wasn’t last Saturday or we’d all be underwater!’

Rotary District Governor Elect Jeff Egan. Photo David Lowe.

Rotary District Governor Jeff Egan also spoke before the walk.

He said one hundred years of Rotary in Australia was a ‘magnificent achievement’ and noted that Rotary had been active in Ballina since 1949, with the local group being one of the leading clubs in the district.

Regarding the DV issue, Mr Egan said, ‘It’s such an important thing to change the cultural ethos in our country,’ suggesting that the anti-domestic violence campaign could go Australia-wide and then beyond, with calls from overseas already coming in.

A very diverse group of walkers (and dogs) then set off on the walk, along the Richmond river and across Missingham Bridge to the Marine Rescue Tower and back.

More photos:

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  1. Great that people are out there publicly against domestic violence! I would have been there with them if there’d been more publicity about this beforehand.

    Domestic violence is a whole of society issue, and while there’s services for women and children escaping this more emphasis should be on men’s behaviours which are the cause of violence against women. The way to stopping DV is to address the root cause, not just supporting those who are impacted. I worked in womens refuges years ago and the fact that DV continues today – in even greater numbers we’re told – tells us that men’s violence has to be seriously addressed, not just by the occasional restraining order or court penalty but by teaching people that violence is never the answer to problems and that learning to negotiate differences is the way forward.

    And it’s not just feminists, social workers and some lawyers and magistrates who condemn violence against women but many more ordinary people. Come on men and women step up and take responsibility for making positive steps.


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