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The Federal Government has launched the third phase of a $18.8 million national campaign to reduce violence against women and children.

The Stop it at the Start campaign encourages adults to speak up and empowers them to take action that will have a positive influence on the attitudes and behaviours of young people.

Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said too many people continued to experience domestic violence, family violence and sexual assault.

“One in six women have experienced physical or sexual violence by a current or former partner since the age of 15 and one in four young people are prepared to excuse violence from a partner.

“There is never an excuse for abuse, and we need to intervene to stop violence-excusing attitudes being normalised.

“Young people learn about respectful relationships from people around them, so we all have the opportunity to make a change.”

Mr Chester said the Stop it at the Start campaign can help parents, family members and other influencers of young people reflect on the impact of what they say and do, and to talk about respect.

“As a community, we must take action and stop violence against women and children at the start,” Mr Chester said.

Minister for Families and Social Services Anne Ruston said the campaign was critical in the Government’s efforts to prevent family, domestic and sexual violence.

“Each and every one of us has a role to play in ensuring disrespectful attitudes and behaviours towards women are not learned in childhood,” Minister Ruston said.

“We all need to unmute ourselves when we witness disrespect and turn it into an opportunity to set the standard for what is and isn’t acceptable.

“Taking action on this issue may seem overwhelming but if we all take small steps, such as reconsidering our own views or talking to our children about respectful relationships, it can add up to a positive change for Australia.”

Advertising for the campaign will start on Sunday 14 March until Saturday 31 July 2021 on television, online, social media, outdoor, and in cinemas.

Copies of the advertisements and resources can be found at www.respect.gov.au If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit www.1800RESPECT.org.au.

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