Griffith University social scientist Dr Adele Pavlidis hopes a webinar bringing perspectives from academics, activists and those working to prevent violence against women in the community, together with professional athletes and organisations will help drive change.
“Violence against women is one of the pressing issues of our time and despite the increasing visibility of women at all levels – including as CEOs and coaches – attitudes that condone violence (including rape jokes, and using gender to undermine people’s abilities and capabilities) continues,” Dr Pavlidis said.
“Sport has an important role to play in preventing violence”
“Sport has an important role to play in preventing violence.
“I am really excited to hear about some of the grassroots work being done out there already and also what are big organisations doing.
“They are starting to do a lot but the tipping point hasn’t quite arrived, even though there are good people trying to do good work in this area.
“We want to bring diverse people to the table to chat about these things and think about whether we might be able to generate some new or novel ideas around ways of preventing violence and sexual harassment, in the context of sport.”
The webinar Sport and Violence Prevention: making change through action, activism and research, will bring together speakers which include Adjunct Research Fellow at the Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research Dr Indigo Willing OAM, Head of Government and Community Relations, NRL, Jaymes Boland-Rudder, Laura Giblett from Our Watch, and Anoushka Dowling from the MATE Bystander program at Griffith.
“Indigo willing started up a grassroots campaign together with some other skateboarders that is all about promoting the idea of consent in skateboarding, and I think consent is an interesting starting point,” Dr Pavlidis said.
“If we can get consent in our everyday interactions, in terms of sexual consent, then we won’t have to think about the pointy end, where we are stopping intimate partner violence against women and murder and so on.
“This is a long-term cultural shift that needs to occur.
“It isn’t ‘we need a new policy’ or we ‘need different laws’, it is all part of the puzzle, but it is this cultural shifting of attitudes towards women, valuing women and non-binary people, and people of colour, and Indigenous people, as much as we value as White men in society.”
Professor Patrick O’Leary, Director of Violence Research and Prevention at Griffith, said the Sport and Violence prevention webinar was one of several offered as part of It’s On All Of Us week.
Others include an eSafety webinar titled ‘Keeping safe online is everyone’s business’ and ‘Respectfully Challenging Problematic Behaviour’, hosted by the MATE Bystander Program at two different sessions.
“Griffith is a socially inclusive university for students, alumni, and staff, recognising that everyone has the right to feel safe by being able to study and work without the fear of sexual violence, harrassment, bullying, racism, homophobia or other prejudices,” he said.
“This year, the pandemic has highlighted the power of technology to facilitate learning and work, but also it reminds us that technology can be place where people’s sense of safety and wellbeing can be threatened through disrespectful and abusive behaviour online.
“Also during this particularly challenging time we need to be conscious that people can feel unsafe and uncertain and this requires we especially need to be aware of disrespectful attitudes and behaviour that can be potentially hidden or discounted due to the pandemic.
“It may also be a time where people can find it harder to escape or seek help in relation to domestic and sexual violence.
“It’s on All of Us” this year takes an online approach by reaching out to the wider Griffith community with a series of events aimed to raise our consciousness of making a difference as well as reaching out to those impacted.”
To register and for more information on webinars and other activities, head online to the Safe Campuses page www.griffith.edu.au/safe-campuses/its-on-all-of-us
Tuesday 18 August 10 – 11am Sport and Violence Prevention: making change through action, activism and research
Monday 24 August 11.30am-12.30pm Keeping safe online is everyone’s business
Tuesday 25 August 12-1.30pm or
Thursday 27 August 10-11.30am Respectfully Challenging Problematic Behaviour