Inequality comes into focus at Film Festival

A scene from Jennifer Siebel Newson's Miss Representation
A scene from Jennifer Siebel Newson's Miss Representation
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WITH 35 years of successful campaigning under its belt, an Edinburgh-based charity that works to prevent domestic abuse is celebrating.

Scottish Women’s Aid will host a film festival this weekend to pay tribute to the results it has achieved since it formed to end violence against women.

The two-day event at the Filmhouse is also designed to make people think about what steps still need to be taken to fully eradicate the inequalities faced by women today.

Tanya Rhodes, a spokeswoman for Scottish Women’s Aid, said: “We’re taking this time to look at the achievements that have been made in the last 35 years and where the problems still lie.

“The films have been selected to highlight, and get people talking about, these issues.”

Scottish Women’s Aid has played a vital role in lobbying for better protection under the law, improving housing opportunities and changing attitudes to domestic abuse.

Issues addressed this weekend include the sexualisation of young girls, gender pay inequalities and how females are portrayed in the media. They include Made in Dagenham, a comedy examining pay gaps.

Ms Rhodes said: “While massive progress has been made, inequality is still rife, and it’s widely accepted that men’s position of power is at the root of domestic abuse.”

Statistics show 8215 incidents of domestic abuse were recorded in Lothian and Borders throughout 2009-10 but, because many cases go unreported, research suggests the actual figure could be higher.

Ms Rhodes said: “We want to highlight the work we are doing to campaign for women. We also want to ensure the public appreciates the impact it has on society.”

On Saturday, Made in Dagenham will be screened at 12.30pm followed by Miss Representation at 4.15pm.

Whale Rider and Pink Saris will be shown on Sunday at 12.30pm and 6pm respectively.