26 September 2023

Men’s campaign to break stereotypes

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Respect Victoria has launched a new campaign showcasing the stories of Victorians taking steps towards equality in their communities, relationships, families and workplaces.

Launched by the Chief Executive of Respect Victoria, Emily Maguire, the ‘Respect Is’ campaign contributes to the United Nation’s 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, due to kick off on 25 November.

Ms Maguire said the campaign aimed to reach everyday Victorians and encourage small steps toward change.

She said it showcased stories that touched on what it meant to be a man, the role respect plays in relationships, and how both men and women benefit from breaking down stereotypes about gender that could hold people back

“Violence against women is preventable, and it’s a challenge that belongs to all of us,” Ms Maguire said.

“It’s a big task, but we can take it one small step at a time in our homes, relationships, friendships, workplaces and communities,” she said.

“An important piece of the puzzle is men supporting each other to break down outdated stereotypes about gender, masculinity, and what it means to be a man.”

Ms Maguire called out people to disclose disrespect when it was safe to do so, saying the campaign provided useful tips on how to go about it.

She said this might be as simple as giving a disapproving look, “rolling your eyes or shaking your head if someone makes a joke that disrespects women, or letting someone know that a comment they’ve made isn’t okay”.

“It might be pulling your mate aside at the pub to have a word, or talking to a manager in your workplace about something you overheard in a meeting,” the Chief Executive said.

Ms Maguire said the campaign outlined 16 ways to call out sexism and disrespect, from not laughing at sexist jokes to challenging the logic of a disrespectful statement and supporting others when they called out disrespectful comments or behaviours.

Respect Victoria’s ‘Respect Is’ campaign resources can be accessed at this PS News link.

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