The Human Rights Law Centre is proud to be a key supporter of a groundbreaking television campaign targeting homophobia, biphobic and transphobic harassment, launched today by Victorian Ministers Mary Wooldridge and David Davis. The HRLC has provided strategic advice and support to the campaign including developing an on-line resource, www.notohomophobia.com.au, to provide comprehensive information on how to “get informed”, “take action” and “get support” for those experiencing or witnessing homophobic harassment. HRLC Director of Advocacy, Anna Brown, is the national spokesperson for the campaign.
"Homophobia, like racism and sexism, has no place in a fair and inclusive community. Discrimination and homophobic harassment not only harm the individuals involved but our community as a whole," said Ms Brown.
Two television ads, to be broadcast nationally over the next year, depict the most common everyday situations where people face harassment – at school, in sports, at work and in public spaces like cafes and on the street. They show people experiencing harassment and witnesses taking action to put a stop to the offensive behavior. TV ads focusing on homophobic harassment have never been shown in Australia. The media campaign features personal stories from people who have experienced harassment to help communicate the personal and social damage harassment causes.
"This campaign will educate and empower people to take action to identify and respond effectively to homophobia," said Ms Brown. "We have a collective responsibility to stop harassment and the harm it causes to our friends, family members and community."
The online resource developed by the Human Rights Law Centre helps people get informed about their rights and the laws relating to homophobic harassment; empowers them to take action with guidance on responding to incidents and making complaints; and provides information and referral options to get support needed to tackle homophobic harassment.
The campaign has been produced by a coalition of LGBTI organisations and builds on years of research examining the harm caused by homophobia and strategies to reduce homophobic harassment in Victoria. It has won unprecedented support from range of community leaders including the AFL’s Andrew Demetriou, Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Ken Lay, VEOHRC Acting Commissioner Karen Toohey, Hobson’s Bay City Council Mayor Tony Briffa, Olympic Flag Bearer and Opals Captain Lauren Jackson, and Leo Burnett CEO Todd Sampson – among others.
HRLC believes that discrimination causes significant harm to individuals and diminishes us all as a community and is proud to support the “No to Homophobia” campaign and work towards greater substantive equality for LGBTI people in Victoria.