This weekend’s NRL Magic Round game between the Titans and Panthers is set to renew the call for men to play a bigger role in challenging disrespect towards women.
Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Shannon Fentiman said LED and TVC screens around Suncorp Stadium would feature advertisements from Our Watch’s Doing Nothing Does Harm national community awareness campaign.
“We know that violence against women is inextricably linked to gender inequality – so treating women with respect is critical in tackling domestic and family violence,” Minister Fentiman said.
“This campaign is all about encouraging other men to step up, particularly when they witness disrespect towards women firsthand.
“We want men to know that they can have a tremendous impact on stopping violence and disrespect towards women from happening in the first place. ”
Research conducted by Our Watch has found that 75 per cent of Australians want practical tips on how to respond to casual sexism, but worry about being perceived in a negative way, particularly amongst mates. Research also shows that men also want to know that if they ‘do something’ in response to sexism, that their mates will back them up and support them.
The Doing Nothing Does Harm campaign is aimed at 25 to 45-year old men who recognise disrespect towards women but don’t know what to do in response.
There are lots of ways men can do something, depending on how comfortable they feel:
- You can show disapproval with body language, you don’t always need to say something
- You can support the women/woman in the situation by asking if she is okay or acknowledging that the situation was not okay
- You can speak up and talk to the disrespectful person about their behavior –at the time or in private afterwards.
Minister Fentiman said having the opportunity to highlight the campaign during the NRL Magic Round allowed the advertisements to reach a large audience and would help change attitudes and behaviours in the community.
“The message is simple. Next time you see disrespect towards women, do something, because doing nothing does harm,” she said.
With May being Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month, Minister Fentiman said it’s a timely reminder to remember we all have a part to play in ending violence against women.