Workers Party representative Lily Kerr has told an all party workshop at Stormont that legislating against on-line abuse and holding social media companies to account is important, but that, on its own, it will not eradicate the problem of threats and attacks on women and girls.
“Misogyny is a societal problem and not confined to council chambers and seats of government”, Lily said .
“Of course we must condemn and counter abuse and attacks on public representatives but not at the expense of the thousands of women in society who are also daily subjected to abuse, discrimination, marginalisation, physical, financial and sexual abuse and murder”, she said.
“For many that could be an uncomfortable conversation but if we are serious about the abuse of women then it is one we need to have”, Lily added.
“The ruthlessness of zero hours contracts, the exploitative nature of much part time employment, the so called ‘glass ceiling’ and the continued marginalisation of women and girls and their exclusion from many aspects of political, social, economic and cultural life – is just as threatening, and should be met with the same outrage resolve, as online abuse and threats”, Lily added.
The #Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls workshop was organised by the Police Service of Northern Ireland in recognition of the growing levels of online abuse directed at female politicians and ahead of next May’s Local Government Elections .
Picture: Workers Party representatives Joanne Lowry (left) and Lily Kerr with Assistant Chief Constable Bobby Singleton and Inspector Jane Brown.