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Men who hold traditional views about gender roles and the “place” of women are more likely to be violent, international research shows. It’s these traditional views that are being challenged by a new programme from Family Planning that focuses on young men, their parents and their teachers.
“There is a clear link between the more strongly held ideas of traditional masculinity and a greater likelihood of that individual man using domestic violence against women. Violent men hold different attitudes than the majority of men who do not use violence,” Family Planning Chief Executive Jackie Edmond says.
“A significant element of our It’s About Mana programme encourages young men to question traditional male values – ideas such as that real men are always in control, have uncontrollable sex drives, deserve a certain entitlement or respect, and that women are objects. Questioning like this – holding these outmoded ideas up to the light - will protect against relationship violence. If young men are involved in discussions that show that most men don’t use or condone violence towards women, this will make it harder for violent individuals to justify it as normal behaviour.”
Ms Edmond says It’s About Mana was developed because young men can often feel like they’re a problem and many campaigns aimed at young men focus on things not to do rather than acknowledging and affirming good behaviour. Rather than follow this model, Family Planning wanted to take a strengths-based approach and to produce a resource that acknowledges behaviour that is achievable - such as how to be a good partner and a decent young man.
To learn more visit: http://www.familyplanning.org.nz/News/LatestNews/tabid/357/EntryId/65/New-programme-focuses-on-young-men.aspx
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