White Ribbon Day Fathers Would Do Anything For Their Daughters

Australia is about to experience a new controversial advertising campaign against domestic violence, designed to build awareness of White Ribbon Day on November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. A 60 second television advertisement features a father who’s prepared to do anything for his daughter – walk in front of a bus, swim through shark infested waters, crawl over broken glass, give his right arm.

Operation in White Ribbon Day TV ad

The super: “If there’s nothing you wouldn’t do for your daughter start by wearing a white ribbon on November 25. UN Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women”. The web site: whiteribbonday.org.au

Click on the image below to play the video.

As usual the Australian White Ribbon Day campaign is confrontational. There is something disturbing about a man who steps in front of a bus while his daughter watches from the pavement. Or a man who dives into shark infested waters while his daughter watches from the beach. Generally a man would do these things to save his daughter from impending doom.

So what is the impending doom this young girl faces? It’s the 75 percent chance of being maltreated throughout her life, because of her gender.


Not everyone is convinced. Kate Hagan of The Age, Melbourne, covered the story this morning…

Barbara Hocking, executive director of mental health charity SANE, has described the campaign as grossly disturbing. She’s concerned about that the images in the campaign will endanger people who are already at risk of attempting self harm. She cites evidence that depiction of suicide methods in the media leads to an increase of suicide attempts using those methods.

Louisa Graham, executive officer of UNIFEM Australia, (United Nations Development Fund for Women), says that the campaign’s graphic approach is what is required to get men to pay attention to the danger faced by women.


The White Ribbon Day “For Your Daughter” campaign was developed at Saatchi & Saatchi, Sydney, by executive creative director David Nobay, copywriter Kathy Mattick, art director Shannon Sutherland, and agency producer Llew Griffiths.

David Nobay, Executive Creative Director, Saatchi & Saatchi, says, “Creatively speaking, the White Ribbon campaign represents quite a challenge: rather than focus our message at the offenders, we are seeking to connect with the ordinary blokes in Australia who would never dream of committing abuse, but whose apathy indirectly gives the real offenders oxygen.”

Filming was directed by Miles Murphy at Good Oil Films, Sydney.

Sound was designed at Nylon.

White Ribbon Day Campaign Online

White Ribbon Day is promoting discussion on the issues raised in the campaign at whiteribbonday.wordpress.com. There is no shortage of material in Australia at the moment, particularly with discussion being raised by Muslim scholars during the season of Ramadan.

See my posts on White Ribbon Day Australia Print campaign and White Ribbon Day Australia 2004, 2005.