Wallabies support Our Watch

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Will Skelton and Wycliff Palu were the latest to show their support in the fight for gender equality and respect for women.

The pair posed with a #noexcuse4violence sign as part of a campaign for The Line, which encourages young people to have healthy and respectful relationships.

The Line is an initiative from violence prevention group, Our Watch, with whom the Australian Rugby Union has partnered.

Skelton and Palu appeared at the recent VIVA7s event at Gore Hill, which donated $5 from every participant to help Our Watch’s efforts to end violence against women and their children.

Wallabies halfback Nick Phipps also showed his support for the cause on social media and encouraged others to do the same.

The campaign encourages people to take a selfie with the hashtag #noexcuse4violence to promote awareness of violence against women, which claims the life of around one Australian woman each week.

The ARU has partnered with Our Watch since July this year to show its commitment to driving national change in the culture, behaviours and attitudes that underpin violence against women and their children.

Prominent athletes from a number of sports have thrown their support behind this campaign, with Netball Australia, the NRL and AFL joining the ARU in Our Watch's Sports Engagement Project.

ARU CEO Bill Pulver said at the time that it was a critical partnership for Rugby.

“The ARU believes it is everyone’s responsibility to address the issue,” he said.

“Indeed, sporting codes have a unique responsibility as they can be a catalyst for change on complex issues facing our society.

“Rugby prides itself on being an inclusive sport.

“One of the ARU’s strategic priorities is increasing female participation and the promotion of women in Rugby, whether it be players, administrators or fans.”

Our Watch campaigns manager Madeleine Clifford said athletes played a significant role in shaping young people's attitudes.

"For young boys in particular, hearing men they look up to and who convey the sort of masculinity they aspire to, helps them reframe their thinking - including breaking free of gender stereotypes and recognising unacceptable behaviour."

For more information on Our Watch, head to: http://www.ourwatch.org.au

For more information on the #noexcuse4violencecampaign, head to: http://www.theline.org.au/noexcuse

If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, family or domestic violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au. In an emergency, call 000.