Refinery29, a US based digital media and entertainment has portal recently launched an initiative, Fired Up to bring the spotlight to issues pertaining to sexual harassment and assault at workplace in Australia. With the initiative, Refinery29 aims to highlight workplace sexual harassment issues on its editorial. It will be based on survivor interviews, resource guides, expert opinion pieces and coverage of related news and events across the region.
Respect@Work report by the Australian Human Rights Commission reported that Australians witness more issues with respect to sexual harassment at workplaces compared to other countries. The country has been facing delayed response when it comes to prevention and control of the such cases. Over the period of five years, the majority of women in Australia have been a victim of harassment at the workplace. It is further reported that only a small percentage of them actually report the issue. Most affected segments include people between the ages of 18 and 29, disabled persons, LGBTQI and Aboriginal people.
Zahra Campbell-Avenell, head of editorial of Refinery29 Australia said that the Fired Up initiative is a portal to lift up unheard voices and experiences of First Nations, CALD women, gender-diverse people and people with a disability. Avenell is looking forward to bringing a significant change in the society.
Nicki Petrou, director of the NTWWC, “NTWWC is the only specialist service of its kind in the Territory supporting some of the most vulnerable workers in the country in a very challenging environment. However, following the loss of our main Federal funding in December 2020, we are now standing at a cliff waiting to see which way we are heading. This fight is not just about keeping an organisation going, but continuing to provide a vital service for women. We’re so grateful to have the support of Refinery29 Australia and others to get our message out there, and hopefully, with this petition, secure the federal funding we need to remain open".
The opening of a petition with the House of Representatives by Refinery29 Australia corresponded with the launch of the initiative- Fired Up. The said petition's prime focus is to generate funding required by the NT Working Women’s Centre (NTWWC). NTWWC deals with closure by December this year, even after gaining ample support in the Respect@Work report. The decision comes after other states and NSW took similar actions. The said petition, supporting the case of NTWWC, is reported to be open for signatures until September 22, 2021.