Friday, August 6, 2021

Stopping family violence: Call out disrespect

Reading Time: 2 minutes 

Some mistakes often start small but if left unrectified, soon become a bigger problem. Harinder Kaur, the co-founder of the Harman foundation, whose mission is to help those who are in extreme vulnerable situations, is a proud advocate who offers her voice standing up for those who don’t have a voice.

She was on the phone with her young male relative and overheard him being rude to his mother. She was taken aback by his tone and attitude and decided to step in and call this out. The nature of these everyday interactions with the women in our life often get overlooked, but not addressing these issues from the start has a detrimental impact in the long run.

As an ambassador of The Stop it at the Start campaign, the social worker encourages Australians to “be a real role model, show your love and respect with your actions”. The way forward towards a progressive society is by valuing and respecting women from all walks of life.


The Australian Government has launched the $18.8 million for the third phase of the national campaign: Stop it at the Start to reduce violence against women and their children.

The Stop it at the Start campaign encourages adults to make themselves heard and empowers them to take actions that will have a positive influence on the attitudes and behaviours of young people. Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston said the campaign was critical in our efforts to prevent family, domestic and sexual violence.

“Each and every one of us has a role to play in ensuring disrespectful attitudes and behaviours towards women are not learned in childhood,” Minister Ruston said.

“We all need to make ourselves heard when we witness disrespect and turn it into an opportunity to set the standard for what is and isn’t acceptable.

“Taking action on this issue may seem overwhelming but if we all take small steps, such as

reconsidering our own views or talking to our children about respectful relationships, it can add up to a positive change for Australia.”

The Stop it at the Start campaign began in 2016 as an initiative under the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010-2022. Phase one of the campaign encouraged adults to recognise their own unconscious behaviour and understand the influence such behaviour can have on others, including the next generation. Phase two asked people to take ownership of the issue rather than using arguments to rationalise disrespectful behaviours.

Evaluation research found the campaign is changing attitudes with 42% of adults taking action, such as having a conversation with a young person about respectful relationships or changing the way they behave towards others as a result of earlier phases of the campaign.

The third phase was launched earlier this year with the main mission centralised around the idea of our role in ensuring women of all ages and cultural backgrounds have opportunities to reach their full potential.

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.org.au.

READ ALSO: Harinder Kaur is Blacktown City’s 2021 Woman of the Year

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