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Thursday, November 04, 2010

International Men's Day- 2010, 19th November

Six pillars and guiding principles of International Men's Day 

1. Promoting positive male role models.
2. Celebrating men’s positive contributions.
3. Focusing on men’s health and wellbeing.
4. Highlighting discrimination.
5. Improving gender relations and promoting equality.
6. Creating a safer, better world.

The literature below is available as a Flyer in PDF file, and can be downloaded here. IMD signage(Australia) can be downloaded here. A sticker for IMD, download here

There may be more ‘stay-at-home’ mums than dads, but equal numbers of working fathers who posses natural care instincts and contribute much to the nurture and protection of children and dependent family members even when they work full time.

Many men who hold down well-paying jobs to provide financially defer the role of primary carer to their female partners, by mutual choice.

Society does not readily accommodate men in the role of full-time homemaker and the often negative portrayal of men in the news and entertainment media discourages more fathers from taking on the primary care responsibilities for young children.

Most dads endeavor to provide the right balance of financial and emotional support and personal involvement in activities for the benefit of their families; and men’s role in providing direct or indirect care for children and family members is worthy of acknowledgment.

Global website:
November 19
celebrating men’s
contributions to childcare
Discrimination and gender inequitable outcomes also affect men and boys in countries around the world, including:
• Under-representation in areas of education and employment.
• Higher rates of death and disability through suicide and hazardous work.
• In many countries, men experience inequitable outcomes in child custody disputes and disproportionate emotional and financial burdens following divorce.
• Double standards in the sexist and negative portrayal of males in the entertainment media; and product advertising which portray simulated violence by the opposite sex against men as trivial and acceptable.
• No ‘whole-of-government’ advocacy for male gender inequity issues.
• The plight of male victims of abuse is often ignored in government-sponsored anti-domestic violence education campaigns.
• General lack of government recognition and annual observance of “International Men’s Day” to acknowledge existing inequitable outcomes and honour the equally valuable financial and social contributions that men and boys make to the global community.
Many governments have lost sight of these facts and the need for advocacy and affirmative action to correct gender discrimination and inequitable outcomes that impact negatively on the lives of men and boys also.
Global website:
Domestic Violence
Domestic violence takes the form of physical, verbal and emotional abuse to intimidate and control. Without diminishing the responsibility of men to treat women with respect, International Men’s Day recognises that males too are victims; and face unique problems in dealing with violence by the opposite sex.

In many countries, statistics on domestic violence are sourced only from surveys of women and the male perspective on reported cases is often not known. Statistics acknowledge that women also assault men but excuse it on the basis of provocation or self-defence.

Government sponsored anti-violence education campaigns tend to focus solely on the responsibility of men.
Few men report abuse by the opposite sex for fear of being ridiculed or having the blame turned back on them because of the flawed mindset in many communities that ‘men can look after themselves’.

Popular culture in many countries tolerates women striking men for offending female sensitivities and accepts casual female violence against men in films, product advertising and TV sitcoms as light-hearted entertainment.
Physical size and strength does not protect a passive male against a determined female aggressor who fears no recrimination on the excuse that ‘a man should never hit a women under any circumstances.’

The plight of male victims of domestic violence is a serious issue that receives little or no empathy and government and media have obligations in addressing it.

Global website:
Men’s Health
Men fall victim to various serious illnesses including cancers, heart disease and stroke. Some men’s health issues are genetic and others are linked to lifestyle factors and risk-taking behaviour.

Alarmingly, the male suicide rate is up to 4 times higher; and up to 90% of work-related deaths are males, due to the greater tendency for men to work in hazardous occupations.

So far as it depends on the individual, men must take control of looking after themselves. Occupation and life-style safety matter as does good diet, exercise and mental health.

Low self-esteem and depression also affect men and boys and various factors can trigger it. There are things men can do to avoid preventable illness.

• Choose a GP and have at least one general physical medical check-up annually.
• Don’t ignore negative feelings about your self worth or suffer on with depression.
• Seek help from your doctor early about significant health problems.
• Investigate ‘Men’s Health’ services and websites about male-specific illness and concerns.
Men’s health matters - take the time to address it!
Global website:

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