ABOUT 200 people gathered at Rosalind Park on Tuesday to attend a vigil in honour of Eurydice Dixon, following her alleged rape and murder in Melbourne last week.
Despite the cold and damp conditions and the late notice, the 5.30pm vigil attracted men, children as well as women who were advocating for the basic right of women to be safe in both private and public places.
Vigil organiser Stacey Dean said she wanted to be part of the change she’d like to see.
“I knew vigils were being held in other cities as part of the general support for Eurydice Dixon so I thought I would do the same in Bendigo in solidarity,” she said.
Other speakers included Tashara Roberts (Aboriginal artist), Julie Oberin (Annie North Women’s Refuge CEO), Kate Wright (CASA CEO) and Margaret Augerinos (Centre for Non Violence CEO).
“Here we are again, trying to reclaim the streets,” Ms Augerinos said.
“We need to be angry about the statistics (relating to violence against women).”
One of the many men in the crowd, Peter Dyke said his reaction was one of shock when he read of Ms Dixon’s death.
“We are supposed to live in a safe country and yet we still have this violence against women,” he said.
Mr Dyke said he felt strongly about the issue of women’s safety on a personal and professional level.
“I work in the area of anger and men’s behaviour change. Statistically I believe that there is a connection between men’s violence towards women in the domestic arena and the public arena,” he said.
Mr Dyke’s wife, the Very Reverend Elizabeth Dyke of St Paul’s Cathedral, said she knew many individuals who had been sexually assaulted.
“I’m eager to raise awareness about this issue,” she said.
“I think it’s important we don’t forget Eurydice.”