'Our Bodies Are Not There For Taking': Vigil For Eurydice Dixon
"We all should be able to walk home, whenever we want, wherever we want, and assume we will make it home safe."
What you need to know
- Thousands of people have responded to a planned vigil on Monday evening at Princes Park in Melbourne where a woman was found dead on Wednesday
- The horrifying alleged murder has sparked an outpouring of support for the 22-year-old's family and hundreds of women sharing stories of dangers faced walking home
- Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews has issued a passionate call for a change in the culture of violence against women
The swell of public debate following the death of Melbourne woman Eurydice Dixon is continuing to grow, with thousands throwing their support behind a vigil to 'reclaim the park' where the body of the 22-year-old was found.
The public vigil -- to be held on Monday evening -- has already garnered over nine thousand responses online, with organisers asking the community to come together to pay their respects to the aspiring comedian, whose body was found in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
"We all should be able to walk home, whenever we want, wherever we want, and assume we will make it home safe," a statement on the event page reads.
"Our bodies are not there for taking. It is not up to us to keep ourselves safe when we know it’s up to men to choose not to inflict violence upon us."
It comes as Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews threw his support behind the vigil, after comments made by a senior Victoria Police officer, suggesting woman had to take responsibility for their own safety -- sparked backlash.
"In a few days, women across Melbourne will hold a vigil in Princes Park for the life of Eurydice Dixon. They will do so firm in the knowledge that Eurydice died because of her attacker's decisions – not because of her own," Andrews said, in a string of tweets on Friday.
He called for an urgent change to the culture of violence against women, which sees one woman dying every week.
"So our message to Victorian women is this: Stay home. Or don't. Go out with friends at night. Or don't. Go about your day exactly as you intend, on your terms. Because women don't need to change their behaviour. Men do"
Dixon was named on Thursday, just hours after police confirmed a 19-year-old man had been charged with one count of rape and one count of murder.
Dixon was believed to have been on her way home from a sold-out performance at the Highlander Bar in Melbourne's CBD, when she sent her final text.
She was a few hundred metres from home when she sent a Facebook message to a friend.
"I’m almost home safe, HBU [ how about you ]," she wrote.
Her friends and members of the Melbourne comedy community have paid tribute to the 22-year-old since news of her death broke, and hundreds have sent their support and love for her family.
Monday's planned event holds a devastating similarity to a candelight vigil held for Jillian Meagher, days after she was found raped and murdered north-west of Melbourne in 2012.
A 2013 peace march, one year after her death, drew thousands in Melbourne's inner-north who called for an end to violence against women.