Men to march in red heels

Sandy Taylor with supporters Kevin Challen, Victoria Park MLA Ben Wyatt and South Fremantle Football Club captain Ryan Cook.
Sandy Taylor with supporters Kevin Challen, Victoria Park MLA Ben Wyatt and South Fremantle Football Club captain Ryan Cook.

But like most of us, she is also concerned about the prevalence of gender violence in the community and in true shoe-lover style, has managed to incorporate women’s footwear into an event designed to help stamp out the crime.

The twist is that men are being recruited to wear a pair of red heels as part of Perth’s inaugural Walk a Mile in Her Shoes march, an international White Ribbon event to stop gender violence against women.

According to the World Health Organisation, it is responsible for 30 per cent of women worldwide being affected by intimate partner violence and is the most common type of violence against women.

Ms Taylor, of East Fremantle, said a combination of things motivated her to stage the event, including the horrific murder of 11-year-old Luke Batty by his father at a Victorian cricket ground in February and Simon Gittany being found guilty of throwing his fiancee off the balcony of their Sydney apartment.

‘I shared some online photos of men wearing red shoes in the Toronto Walk a Mile march on my business Easoto’s page and it created some discussion,’ Ms Taylor said.

‘It just grew from there and instead of my business appearing at an expo over east, I decided to spend the money on running this event and publicising the White Ribbon organisation, which doesn’t seem to have much of a profile in Perth.

‘It’s a grim subject but we need to bring it out into the open and this quirky fun event is a great way to do it ” and it’s more affordable for everyday people than going to the White Ribbon ball.’

Ms Taylor said good men needed to stand up and be role models for the community at events like these.

‘Until men change their behaviour, things won’t change,’ she said. ‘People ask why women don’t leave violent partners, but why do men hit women in the first place.’

All men are encouraged to join the march and their supporters are asked to join in the fun and cheer from the sideline before celebrating with them at a breakfast sizzle, with all funds raised going to White Ribbon Australia, a male-led charity dedicated to ending men’s violence against women.