Women’s Aid launch powerful ‘He’s Coming Home’ ad campaign to fight domestic abuse during Qatar World Cup

Musicians including Self Esteem have supported the new campaign

Women’s Aid have launched a new campaign titled ‘He’s Coming Home’, aiming to fight football-related domestic abuse.

The 2022 men’s World Cup is currently being held in Qatar, amid a slew of controversies including the host country’s human rights record and views on homosexuality, which is illegal in Qatar.

The new ad campaign focuses on the rise in domestic violence while major footballing events take place.

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As the campaign specifies, studies have seen a rise of up to 38 per cent in cases of domestic violence after football matches, with both wins and losses contributing.

On Instagram, the charity wrote: “Football doesn’t cause domestic abuse but a big game can be the catalyst for increasing or more severe abuse. If you’re a survivor who needs support, please reach out to us. We understand, and we will believe you.”

Farah Nazeer, chief executive of Women’s Aid, said in a statement: “There is a role to play for everyone in helping to end domestic abuse, and raising awareness of the support available during major tournaments like the upcoming World Cup can help many women living with abusive partners.

“While domestic abuse is not caused by football, we know existing abuse can become more severe or frequent during big tournaments.

“We ask everyone to help share this important campaign at a time when many women need to know how to get support.”

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After England’s 0-0 draw against the USA on Friday night (November 25), the charity tweeted: “As many of us will be disappointed about the England game tonight, the impact this will have on survivors is much more severe.”

Those who have shared the campaign’s message include Self Esteem, who retweeted a tweet from campaigner Lauren Fabianski, who wrote: “Over a decade working in ad agencies and I’ve never seen a campaign as good as this Women’s Aid one.

“Violent domestic abuse incidents increase by 38 per cent when Eng lose or 26 per cent when the team wins or draws.”

In the run-up to the tournament beginning, Dua Lipa denied rumours that she was to perform at the opening ceremony and called on Qatar to “fulfil all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host the World Cup,” while Rod Stewart revealed that he also turned down the opportunity to be a part of the celebrations for moral reasons.

Last week, Welsh football fans claimed that their rainbow hats were “confiscated” in Qatar ahead of their World Cup match with the USA on Monday (November 21). In a statement, the Football Association of Wales (FAW) said it was “extremely disappointed” that fans were told to remove the hats, and that it planned to address the matter with FIFA.

However, FIFA are now set to allow rainbow hats and flags into World Cup stadiums in a policy U-turn.

The news came after it was announced that England and Wales would no longer wear ‘OneLove’ armbands during matches, which were designed as a gesture to support LGBT+ rights, but has now seen teams threatened with sanctions by FIFA for wearing them. At their match with Japan, the German team protested by wearing rainbows on their boots and training kit and covering their mouths in a team photo.

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