Pitch Black White Ribbon Fun Run

Braving an unseasonably chilly Darwin morning, more than 65 RAAF personnel in Darwin raised awareness for White Ribbon Australia with a Fun Run on August 5.

Held by Darwin based No. 13 Squadron (13SQN) and in conjunction with Exercise Pitch Black 16, the base’s regular fun run was held as part of Air Force’s ongoing campaign to become a White Ribbon Australia accredited workplace.

Achieving workplace accreditation will bring Air Force in line with Navy and Army, and signify Defence’s stand against male-led violence against women.

Deputy Chief of Staff Air Force Headquarters, Group Captain John Martin, said the statistics on domestic violence against women were disturbing.

“At least one woman is killed on average every week as a direct result of violence perpetrated by a man,” he said.

“One of the leading contributors to death for women aged 15-44 is domestic violence - again caused by men.

“I was shocked when I learned of those statistics.”

Commanding Officer 13SQN, Wing Commander Wes Perrett, said it was important for Air Force to become accredited with White Ribbon Australia.

“We need to demonstrate not only internally but also with the Australian public that we are opposed to men’s violence against women,” he said.

“We are a proud organisation that values diversity, and in particular gender diversity.

“When my troops support an event like this it makes me proud.  I know they respect and adhere to the values of not only White Ribbon but to also those of New Horizon.”

Group Captain Martin said White Ribbon was aligned to New Horizon.

“They are complimentary to each other,” he said

“By contributing to this world wide movement we are not only addressing the issue of violence against women, we are also strengthening our own values, which also has a huge impact on our work places.”