AS we heard the awful stories this week as women came forward to share their testimonies, it’s clear that, across society, we must take action.
We must challenge attitudes that can lead to harassment, abuse, violence and bullying.
We still hear excuses for men perpetrating these actions or, through attempts to legitimise the objectification of women, an inference that women are somehow to blame for the harassment or abuse perpetrated on them.
We must call out these actions and words, and the misogyny and sexism behind them, for what they are.
We need to recognise these attitudes are harmful. We need to stand against it. And we must all do this. Men and women. It’s no longer OK to ignore comments or make excuses as it’s “the way it’s always been”.
Violence against women is about power and control.
It is never the fault of those who suffer the abuse. That is why, as a government, we take all forms of gender-based violence seriously.
A key component of our Equally Safe strategy is ensuring the harmful attitudes, acts and behaviours – those laughed off as “banter” – are addressed early.
There is no place for sexism or harassment and it should not be tolerated – socially or legally.
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