7 minutes that could eradicate disrespect for women

08/03/2021 | 2 mins

A not-for-profit organisation that supports dads to engage with their children is urging fathers and father figures to raise boys into men who have a deep, lifelong respect for women.

The Fathering Project, founded by UWA researchers, has released a video lasting 7 minutes that could eradicate disrespect for women on International Women’s Day 2021 by helping dads teach their sons strong values so that all men grow up to treat women respectfully.

Dr Bruce Robinson, Founder of The Fathering Project, from UWA’s School of Medicine said there is no denying under the current climate, lies a clear issue around respect, specifically regarding the treatment of women by some men.

“The ongoing issues of domestic violence, sexual harassment and abuse, gender bias and discrimination against women, emphasise the immense work that still remains to ensure boys and men learn how best to respect women,” Dr Robinson said.

“On International Women’s Day, The Fathering Project’s key mission is to urge fathers and father-figures, to raise boys into men who have the deepest ongoing respect for all women. This will change the future for both women and men.”

Dr Robinson strongly encourages fathers to firstly be a role model and also to embed unambiguous and uncompromising values of respect for women, and empathy to girls’ feelings when they are disrespected, right from a young age.

He said that if dads go missing in action in this role then the boys remain vulnerable to some of the negative influences of mates, music, social media and movies.

He wants dads to look at their little boys and ask themselves ‘what sort of men do I want these boys to grow up to be’, and to realise dads have a powerful role in shaping that man and that dad should not be ‘missing in action’.

Dr Robinson reinforced the critical role a father plays, not only to his son, but also to his daughter

“The foundations for respect that a girl expects from a man, are established early on, and a lot of that comes from her father,” Dr Robinson said.

“When the father treats his daughter with respect, the daughter will not tolerate disrespect from another man.”

More information about the Fathering Project is available here.

Media references

Professor Bruce Robinson (UWA Medical School), 0419 926 109

Simone Hewett (UWA Media and PR Manager), 08 6488 3229 / 0432 637 716

Maddie Dean (The Fathering Project),  0421 362 595

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