Campaign challenges abusive teen relationships

The Home Office has launched a TV advertising campaign to challenge the attitudes of teenagers to violence and abuse in relationships.

The campaign has been made by feature film director Shane Meadows and was created by Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R.

The adverts target 13 to 18 year olds and highlighting the signs and consequences of abuse. The campaign challenges them to stop abusive behaviour or seek help.

The TV ads show a teenage girl being abused physically and emotionally by her controlling boyfriend. The ad has the challenge “If you could see yourself would you see abuse?” and “If you could see yourself would you stop yourself?”.

There is supporting radio, press and outdoor activity and a digital campaign, crated by Saint. A viral allows the user to interact with a ’dream’ boyfriend or girlfriend in which the boy becomes abusive, before messages arrive that challenge teenagers to recognise and reject abuse.

A dedicated website gives teenagers information on abuse in relationships and where to go for help.
It will include live online discussions where experts will answer questions about relationships and abuse
The campaign includes an education in schools strategy. In partnership with the DCSF and stakeholders the Home Office has helped to produce a school pack designed to provide school professionals and students with further information and suggestions about how to handle specific issues arising from the campaign.

Home secretary Alan Johnson says: “We hope this campaign will help teenagers to recognise the signs of abuse and equip them with the knowledge and confidence to seek help, as well as understanding the consequences of being abusive or controlling in a relationship.

’Changing attitudes will take time but it is essential if we are going to stop violence against women and girls.’
A recent survey carried out by children’s charity NSPCC found that a quarter of girls and 18 % of boys reported some form of physical violence and nearly three quarters of girls reported some sort of emotional abuse in their relationships.

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Tom Fishburne is founder of Marketoon Studios. Follow his work at marketoonist.com or on Twitter @tomfishburne See more of the Marketoonist here

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