White Ribbon’s “Day After Day” Video Addresses Domestic Violence Rises During Pandemic

Home hasn’t been safe for Canadians facing abuse…

The COVID-19 pandemic not only saw the businesses closures and mental health challenges; it also saw a rise in domestic violence. To address the pandemic within a pandemic, advocacy group White Ribbon has partnered with Hubert Davis, the Canadian filmmaker who was nominated for an Academy Award for Documentary Short Subject for Hardwood in 2005, to create a short film that speaks directly to men who are using, or at risk of using, gender-based violence as a response to the stresses of the pandemic.

Davis previously worked with White Ribbon on the award-winning 2019 PSA Boys Don’t Cry, a short film that looked at the roots of toxic masculinity and the ways parents and educators can help to encourage healthy masculinities.

Day After Day is a four-minute film follows the story of a family in lockdown experiencing a troubling pattern of domestic abuse. Told from the separate perspectives of two partners, the PSA uses the same set of words to tell two very different stories of isolation: one of a man, trapped in negative ways of thinking, with complicated emotions he never really learned to articulate; and a woman who is trapped inside her home with a man becoming increasingly volatile and unrecognizable to her.

Watch White Ribbon’s full film below:

The PSA reflects one of the harsh realiteis of the COVID-19 pandemic: a rising tide of reports of domestic violence. Call volumes spiked almost immediately when Canada first locked down…Between March and October 2020 calls to police about domestic disputes increased 8.2%, according to Statistics Canada. Helplines witnessed an alarming increase almost immediately: In British Columbia, The Battered Women’s Support Services saw a 400% increase in calls between April and May 2020, while The Assaulted Women’s Helpline in Ontario reported a 400% increase in calls in April 2020.

“The story we tell in the PSA is, unfortunately, an accurate portrayal of the ways some men are using violence against their partner, family members or within the community, in reaction to the stresses of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Humberto Carolo, Executive Director, White Ribbon. “The rise in reports of domestic abuse since lockdowns began is staggering. It was critical we speak directly to men who are using violence, and to all men, to remind them they are not alone, that they must change their behaviour, and that we can help guide them towards healthier masculinities.”

“For too many women, stay-at-home orders during the pandemic have meant being trapped inside with abusive partners. By mirroring the dialogue of the two partners, we show how the unique stresses of the pandemic are causing some men to become abusive – but how that abuse is infinitely more damaging for those who experience it,” said Davis.

To learn more about White Ribbon and Davis’ domestic violence short film, visit DayAfterDay.ca.

Tags: COVID-19, Domestic Violence, Hubert Davis, White Ribbon

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