Banner making event gets a ‘shocking’ turnout ahead of Girls Night In protest

  • The banner making event hopes to bring students together and raise awareness of spiking
  • Greater Manchester residents are being asked to sign an open letter to Andy Burnham
  • The protest is part of the Girls Night In campaign, which over 2,000 people are expected to attend

The University of Manchester hosted a banner making event ahead of the Girls Night In protest at St Peter’s Square.

Students paint banners pic by Rebecca Redican

The protest is calling for a boycott of clubs due to the continued issue of spiking.

The campaign began after reports of spiking by injection in Dundee, Edinburgh and Nottingham made the headlines.

The banner making event took place in The Hive at The University of Manchester’s Student Union and was attended by nearly 100 people, including Sky and ITV news.

The Girls Night in Manc Instagram page, who created the banner event, posted the reason the embargo is important: “We will use the boycott to demand that Andy Burnham and Greater Manchester Combined Authority as well as club owners take spiking and sexual assault more seriously by taking tangible measures such as funding anti-spiking devices in all clubs and bars.”

Girls Night In Manchester (GNIM) organisers are calling on leaders to implement extra licencing measures on local bars and clubs.

In an open letter to Mayor Andy Burnham and council members, GNIM say these measures should include a written policy and procedure on how individual venues will respond to reports of spiking.

They also suggest staff should be trained in dealing with spiking related disclosures.

The GNIM Instagram page posted for the first time nine days ago and already has 3,624 followers with the initial post getting 23,917 likes.

The Instagram page told followers about the banner event on Monday and the response “shocked” the organisers.

Emily Bennet, one of the events organisers spoke to NQ about the turnout: “This is bigger than we expected it be to be honest, It’s amazing to see how many people have gotten involved.”

Robyn Bain, from Bolton University, took part in creating a banner and told NQ why she was taking part: “The drugging and spiking is just awful.

“It needs to stop and the likes of the police need to pull their fingers out, this shouldn’t be happening in 2021 women should feel safe to go out.”

Emily explained why the protest tonight is so important to GNIM: “We are hoping to get a lot of attention to the issue of spiking, so that politicians and club owners try and take steps to improve safety in venues around the city.”

Robyn hopes that tonight’s protest will be make people aware of the issues around spiking: “I hope police and bouncers of nightclubs will see this and take action. Nobody should feel unsafe on a night out, not just women, everyone.”

After the protest, which began at 7pm, students were being invited back to The University of Manchester’s Student Union to watch a film in the theatre.