The federal government is rolling out a three-year trial program to address the rise of toxic masculinity among school-aged boys and young men.
The initiative has been launched by the Albanese Labor government following concerns surrounding the influence of strong misogynistic voices in online media such as walking dickbag Andrew Tate. Who, might I remind you, not only teaches impressionable young men derogatory, untrue and misogynistic things about women but has genuinely been charged with rape and human trafficking in Romania.
According to the Department of Social Services, 25 per cent of teenage boys in Australia “look up to social media personalities who perpetuate harmful gender stereotypes and condone violence against women.”
That’s fucking terrifying.
The Healthy Masculinities Project will receive $3.5 million in funding, with the trial aiming to provide boys with a greater understanding of positive masculinity and how that can help them in having healthy and more fulfilling relationships. It’s part of the First Action Plan Priorities Fund, which is a $11.9 million initiative to address the priorities raised by the National Plan To End Violence Against Women And Children.
Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth explained that the trial will involve a combination of methods and mediums to promote a healthy idea of masculinity to impressionable young men including providing them with more positive role models and teaching these important lessons in a variety of settings from school, sport locker rooms and online.
“Research shows there are strong links between harmful forms of masculinity and the perpetration of violence against women,” Minister Rishworth said.
“Educating boys about healthy masculinity and providing them with positive role models are important steps to ending cycles of violence.
“As violence against women continues to plague Australian communities, we must take important steps to address violent behaviour before it starts.
“From extensive consultation, we know that fostering respect in young men is a prerequisite to creating a safer future for our next generation.”
Clinical psychologist Professor Adam Guastella told The Daily Telegraph that the initiative was a step in the right direction but more had to be done if we wanted to see a lasting impact.
“It’s a really great initiative to try to address some of this unhealthy attitude that develops but the big problem that will come out of this is how do you compete with the information that’s on social media without directly addressing the constant barrage of content that young people have on TikTok and YouTube and things,” he said, per The Daily Telegraph.
“We have to invest in the young to save the future. It makes sense to invest in young people’s minds.”
Personally, I think this initiative is wonderful. And it’s a great opportunity to spotlight one of my favourite male influencers, niche king Tony Polcari, whose incredibly earnest and sweet content is earning him hundreds of followers by the day, but he uses his platform to speak on the importance of what he calls “vibrant masculinity.”
Help is available.
If you require immediate assistance, please call 000.
If you’d like to speak to someone about sexual violence, please call the 1800 Respect hotline on 1800 737 732 or chat online.
Under 25? You can reach Kids Helpline at 1800 55 1800 or chat online.