1. Learn to recognise victim-blaming

When we place responsibility on the victim/survivor of violence rather than on the person who was violent, this is called ‘victim-blaming’.

Learn how to recognise and challenge victim-blaming by checking out one of the following resources:

  • Watch this short clever animated video clip which highlights the nature of victim-blaming.
  • Check out the #FixedIt campaign by journalist Jane Gilmore, which highlights and challenges victim-blaming about violence against women in the media.
  • Read these two news stories, which report on the same incident of family violence, to learn how victim‑blaming can be promoted through the media and why we need to challenge it (Story 1 and Story 2).

How does it help?

Research shows that norms or attitudes that justify, excuse or minimise violence against women, increase the likelihood of violence against women occurring. This also includes blaming women for any violence they experience, which is called ‘victim-blaming’. Victim-blaming fails to hold perpetrators to account, and makes it hard for women to report the violence and seek help. Challenging victim-blaming is a key way we can help prevent violence against women.

Keep going!

You can continue to challenge victim-blaming in your everyday life:

  • Never excuse, justify or minimise violence against women
  • Challenge victim-blaming statements when you hear them
  • Listen to and believe women if they disclose experiences of violence to you
  • Let victim/survivors know it is never their fault
  • Instead of asking ‘Why does she stay if he’s violent?’ ask ‘Why is he violent?’

Please note that these clips/articles contain information regarding the topics of sexism, gender inequality and violence against women. If you find the information distressing, please click through for information and support on self care. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, please visit the our help section for further information and support.

2. Learn about unconscious gender bias and how it might be a problem in your workplace

What is unconscious gender bias? What does it look like?

Read/watch two of the items below which provide examples of gender bias in the workplace and how it can be challenged:

  • Watch this clip from ABC’s The Drum to hear how the Tropfest film competition dramatically increased the number of women finalists in one year
  • Read these articles written by colleagues Martin and Nicole, who noticed significant differences in the way their professional peers and clients treated them, when they exchanged email signatures for a week.
  • Read this article about the experience of two women who struggled to get their internet start-up business off-the-ground, until they decided to invent ‘Keith Mann’, a fictional male founder.
  • Watch this short but clever video on gender-based assumptions we often make in the workplace, and think about how this might apply in your workplace.

How does it help?

Unconscious gender bias refers to prejudiced or unfair assumptions that an individual holds about a person or group of people, based on their gender. In many cases, people are not aware of their own gender biases, so their judgement or assumptions can be considered ‘unconscious’, or automatic.

These biases are often negative and based on gender stereotypes.

Unconscious gender bias is a major barrier to women’s participation in leadership and decision-making. Promoting women’s decision-making and independence have been recognised as key essential actions in preventing violence against women.

Keep going!

Continue to take action to challenge unconscious gender bias:

  • Read more about the issue
  • Become aware of your own gender-based biases and assumptions about women and men
  • Call out gender bias when you notice it in your workplace
  • Advocate for unconscious gender bias training for staff at your workplace

Please note that these clips/articles contain information regarding the topics of sexism, gender inequality and violence against women. If you find the information distressing, please click through for information and support on self care. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, please visit the our help section for further information and support.

3. Learn about the concepts of gender equality, gender equity and patriarchy

Many of us have heard the terms  gender equality, gender equity and patriarchy, but might not know what these terms mean and how they relate to men’s violence against women.

Check out these short articles , clips and images, which help explain these concepts:

  • This illustration demonstrates the difference between equality and equity.
  • This info graphic provides a snapshot of gender inequality in Australia
  • In this talk by Ananya Roy describes her lived experience of patriarchy and discusses what is needed to overcome gender inequality
  • Laura Bates, who started the Everyday Sexism Project, discusses gender inequality in the UK in this short video (Content Note: this clip and the Everyday Sexism Project website features strong language and discussions of violence and sexual assault against women and girls)
  • Read this short article by bell hooks to learn about patriarchy and its role in men’s violence against women.

How does it help?

While many Australian’s support equality there is less understanding of the role of gender equity in achieving this.

Learning about patriarchy also helps us to understand some of the history that has produced the gender inequality women experience today. Patriarchy as a system, belief, ideology and practice, enables, minimises, excuses and justifies men’s use of violence against women, to maintain male dominance. Learning about patriarchy and how you can challenge it is key to preventing men’s violence against women.

Keep going!

You can learn more about patriarchy and gender inequity/inequality by checking out the following short videos and articles:

In late 2016, Federal Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins travelled all over Australia to explore our progress towards achieving gender equality. You can read about what she found and the Commission’s thoughts on how we can create a more gender equal country.

Please note that these clips/articles contain information regarding the topics of sexism, gender inequality and violence against women. If you find the information distressing, please click through for information and support on self care. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, please visit the our help section for further information and support.

4. Learn about sexual consent, gender and power

All adults and young people are responsible for ensuring that we understand what consent entails in our relationships and sex lives. Read this short article to learn more about sexual consent, gender and power. Then watch this simple three‑minute clip which explains sexual consent by comparing it to asking someone for a cup of tea.

How does it help?

In Australia, one in five women report having experienced sexual violence since the age of fifteen (results from ABS Personal Safety Survey 2012). Women are at risk of sexual violence in their homes, in public, and in their workplaces. Many gender roles and stereotypes support unequal power between women and men, including notions of male sexual entitlement and conquest over women, and responsibility for contraception being placed on women. Promoting understanding of sexual consent therefore helps prevent violence against women and promote gender equality.

Keep going!

Learn practical tips and suggestions for ways you can ask for consent in your sexual relations:

Please note that these clips/articles contain information regarding the topics of sexism, gender inequality and violence against women. If you find the information distressing, please click through for information and support on self care. If you or someone you know is experiencing violence, please visit the our help section for further information and support.