(Back row, left to right) Ospreys NikKi Walker, Ian Evans and Daniel Biggar (Front row, left to right) South Wales Police players, Ashley Morgan, Stuart Elson and Rhodri Jenkins
Ospreys the latest team to back domestic abuse campaign
The Ospreys are the latest team to join the 'Wales Tackles Domestic Abuse' campaign and are urging others to follow suit.
The campaign, launched in partnership with the Welsh Rugby Union ahead of the Six Nations Championships is designed to draw attention to the issue of domestic abuse in Wales.
In support of the campaign, rugby clubs are being encouraged to log onto the campaign website www.walestacklesdomesticabuse.com and submit a photograph of a club representative wearing their respective club colours and displaying a white ribbon.
Ospreys Wing Nikki Walker said:
"This is a very worthwhile campaign and we would encourage those who have not yet pledged their support, to take a couple of minutes out of their next training session to put on a white ribbon and take a photo which can be uploaded on to the Wales Tackles Domestic Abuse website".
South Wales Police RFC and the Ospreys are just two of the many clubs already taking a stand against domestic abuse in Wales.
The photographs will be used to create an online mural of support for the campaign and will also be displayed as part of a slide show on the big screens at the home internationals.
Although the playing and broadcasting of rugby matches in Wales do not in themselves cause people to become violent, figures show that 39% of domestic abuse cases involve alcohol, and sadly research indicates that during major sporting events incidents of domestic abuse increase because people are drinking more.
Supt Kevin O'Neill, South Wales Police Public Protection Department said:
"Domestic abuse is often hidden behind closed doors and it is our intention, with the support of local rugby teams, to break the silence on this unacceptable crime and encourage those suffering abuse to seek the support and protection they need".
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.