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Rob's letter to the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission HREOC

Sexist language in govt. DV campaigns

To: 
HREOC 
New Complaints 

From:  Rob Duff  Co-ordinator
Cultural Harmony Institute 

SEXIST LANGUAGE 

I have been concerned over what seems to me to be a common use of sexist language in the Domestic Violence debate.

This particularly involves the use of terms meaning 'women' being used synonymously and interchangeably with terms meaning 'victims'. Also the converse is common, ie using terms meaning 'perpetrators' being used synonymously and interchangeably with terms meaning 'men'.

I have spoken to a solicitor about this who has told me that such usage does definitely constitute sexist language. Since such usage implies that the set of 'victims' is identical with a set of 'women' and the set of 'perpetrators' is identical with a set of 'men' - which is clearly untrue.

To define perpetrators and victims by sex is, of course, literally a sexual discrimination. My question at this point, so as not to waste either my time or yours, is whether or not the Commission regards such usage as sexist language because there is no point in my making a complaint if such usage is not regarded as sexist.

Please include reasons for your decision. 

Regards,

Robert Duff   CAIRNS

Coordinator, Equal Parenting Movement

Co-director, Fathers4Equality

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