Gender Advisory PanelComplaint. On the 3
February, I attended a meeting of the Gender Advisory Panel, at Castle Buildings, chairedby Eileen Sung of the Gender Equality Unit. The aim of my attendance was to highlight ,as men,areas of inequality with a view to them forming part of the Gender Equality Strategy.No mention of the people who would be present was given beforehand. Upon attending, I gave “myspeech” about inequalities men suffer. This was across the board and very indepth, and includedfacts, stats and links to the research where information came from. Midway through, Eileen Sungprompted me, when discussing Family Law, if anything had changed. I advised no. ( Eileen Sung isaware of my activism within this area and I feel this prompt was a deliberate act to discredit me).Family Law is an area which, once addressed, many areas of inequality could be rectified.When I finished my “speech”, one lady highlighted her “concern” ref the figures of males who suffercrime, and males who are imprisoned, compared to numbers of females who suffer crime, and areimprisoned. This is a major inequality in whereby females commit the same crimes, but are notbeing imprisoned for such. She turned this aspect round and tried to discredit the inequality by wayof highlighting females suffer more Domestic Violence. This is true, but, Domestic Violence was notmentioned, it was figures for ALL crime as a whole where men suffer more.The discussion then moved swiftly to Domestic Violence, which is one of a number of areas of gender inequality reference male support networks. This change of discussion was not my doingbut had to be replied to. It was highlighted there is a lack of support networks, but , Eileen Sunghighlighted the National Domestic Violence Helpline which is managed by Womans Aid. EileenSung was made aware of our views, as men, of this service several years ago at a meeting which weattended with her department. At this meeting, Eileen Sung made commitments which she negatedon after.In response to Eileen Sung highlighting the National Domestic Violence Helpline, our views weregiven, not personal feelings, but views of men who have come to us seeking help, that they donot want to use a service managed by Womans Aid. Please note, at a previous meeting of theHard to reach Working Group, it was openly denied Womans Aid have a hand in the NationalDomestic Violence Helpline, but then openly admitted by Womans Aid at a more recent meeting of stakeholders working with males, that they manage it.(Across the UK, a councillor has asked for a full investigation into third sector groups, such asWomans Aid due to complaints from males.)This issue came to a head, when Annie Campbell from Womans Aid, launched a personal attack.Terms such as “parachuted in”, “feeding men this rubbish” were two. She then went on to highlighthow Womans Aid have assisted “young” men and boys, and are the sole provider of support tosuch. I was not permitted to response, instead spoken down to and quite clearly offended whenshe retorted that “ Womans Aid deal with the emotional children who suffer due to fathers playinggames with contact”. Eileen Sung at no time stopped her from launching such an attack on me asan individual, and once Annie Campbell had finished, I was made to feel as if I had done somethingwrong in highlighting the true facts of Gender Inequality. Eileen Sung “passed” the blame of my attendance at the door of OFMDFM which totally offended me. To give an excuse regardingsomeones presence at a meeting is a very very insulting thing to do.