Breadbags against domestic violence, a good idea that is running out of steam

Communication Department / Stéphane Danna

The new initiative by the Committee for the Protection of Women’s Rights began on 4 October with the distribution of 150,000 bread bags in participating Monegasque bakeries: Costa, Épi d’Or and Mullot. A month on, the operation seems to be flagging.

Violence has no place in our lives“. The slogan of the awareness-raising campaign by the Committee for the Protection of Women’s Rights is clear. The message, along with emergency numbers, is printed on bread bags – the association’s new original idea to bring the message into homes. Homes that are precisely where the majority of violence against women takes place: one in two cases is committed at the victim’s home or the perpetrator’s home, according to the 2020 report by the IMSEE and the Women’s Rights committee.

>> SEE ALSO: Monaco and violence against women in 2020

“The customers said well done”

The idea was well received by customers. A manager at Costa Bakeries, who is in regular contact with their eight shops in the Principality, immediately acknowledged the customers’ enthusiasm. “They told us that it was really very nice to have done this. People were very receptive, they said well done.”

“The feedback is very positive from the bakeries, which are continuing to distribute them,” confirms Céline Cottalorda, inter-ministerial delegate for women’s rights, adding that “if they [the bakery staff] are asked, they explain what the campaign is about.”

Bread bags domestic violence
© Direction de la communication / Stéphane Danna

The success is due in part to the involvement of the bakeries’ staff, who try to promote the approach. This is the case at the Mullot bakery, in the Fontvieille shopping centre, where the manager told us she takes the time to answer customers’ questions when required. However, for this bakery, which is especially popular at lunchtime, the problem is that “customers want to be quick”. Here, the results are unequivocal: the bread bag is inconsequential. “They don’t even look at it,” the manager tells us.

Maybe with November 25, they’ll feel more concerned

Épi d’Or bakery

Routine sets in…

The assessment is just as mixed at the Épi d’Or, where, between two baguettes, the salesman explains to us that the customers already no longer talk about it. “At the very beginning, they told us it was a good thing to do. Then, over time, routine sets in. “Most of our clients come every day and once the novelty has worn off…” A feeling that is confirmed by a regular, interviewed as she left the bakery, who was pleasantly surprised at the beginning but “I don’t pay attention now.”

“Perhaps for November 25, for the day itself, they will feel a little more concerned,” adds the baker, referring to the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. The bread bag campaign fits in with the Day, which will be covered by the Women’s Rights Committee, explains Céline Cottalorda. Last year, the association produced a poignant short film on the “phantom pandemic”, this scourge from which the Principality is not exempt.

More information on the Women’s rights committee website and on  0800 91 90 10 ; Emergency numbers: 18 or 112 for the fire service, 17 or (+377) 93 15 30 15 for the police, (+377) 97 98 97 69 for the emergency department at the CHPG hospital.