Stop it at the start advertising continues on International Women’s Day

Joint Media Release with:

Senator the Hon. Michaelia Cash
Minister for Women

The next round of advertising in the $30 million Stop it at the start campaign returns from this International Women’s Day, reminding each of us that we can play a role in breaking the cycle of violence against women.

The campaign, jointly funded by governments through COAG, which originally launched in April last year, encourages adults – parents, other family members, teachers, sports coaches, employers and community leaders – to reflect on their views of disrespectful behaviour, and start a conversation with the young people in their lives.

It is based on confronting research released in 2015 that found adults often unknowingly excuse unacceptable behaviour through automatic assumptions and responses with phrases such as “It’s ok, he probably did it because he likes you’, or they shift the blame onto girls by saying things like “It takes two to tango.”

Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, said there had been an overwhelming response to the campaign so far.

“This important campaign is starting to break through some of these deeply held attitudes by generating lots of discussion,” Minister Porter said.

“Recognising these automatic responses and correcting them is the first step towards breaking the cycle of violence against women.

“While we know that changing attitudes takes time, we’re making good progress. The campaign has been seen by millions of people, been shared widely on social media both nationally and across the world.

“Research on the impact of the campaign shows that 67 per cent of influencers have seen the campaign, and of those, 68 per cent have taken action as a consequence of it.  This is a strong start to this important campaign to change attitudes about violence towards women.”

Minister for Women, Senator Michaelia Cash, said it is important for us, as adults to recognise the role we play in children’s lives to help them learn from an early age about respectful relationships.

“This International Women’s Day we should all reflect on the theme ‘be bold for change’. It is up to us to make the change, empower women and girls to not accept disrespect and avoid passing on old stereotypes to the next generation,” Minister Cash said.

“This round of advertising will run until mid-April and includes online video, social media and what’s known as out-of-home advertising such as bus and train interiors.”

Supporting resources include the popular Excuse Interpreter, Respect Checklist and Conversation Guide. All are designed to help adults reflect on their own views, and have conversations with boys and girls about respect.

This three-year Council of Australian Governments initiative is jointly funded by Australian, state and territory governments. It is one element of the national, long-term strategy to reduce violence against women and their children and underpinned by the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010-2022.

Visit www.respect.gov.au for more information on the campaign and high-resolution copies of the advertisements. If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.gov.au.