While empowering women, girls, and gender-diverse individuals remains a cornerstone of gender-based violence (GBV) work, boys and male-identifying youth also play a key role in the prevention of GBV. Providing boys and male-identifying youth with opportunities to explore their identities, reflect on their own understandings of masculinity, and advocate for gender equality are some of the ways they can be allies in advocating for transforming social norms.

Large proportions of the population in Australia have perpetrated domestic or sexual violence. If 1.6 million women (17%) and 548,000 men (6.1%) in Australia have experienced physical or sexual violence from a current or previous cohabiting partner since the age of 15, then in turn, large numbers of people are the perpetrators of this violence. 

Traditional models of how to be a man face growing criticism in the twenty-first century, with increasing attention to the harms they cause among men, women, and communities. Social norms regarding manhood are diverse across cultures, history, and within any one society. But one version of manhood increasingly is seen as a problem, the version in which men are expected always to be tough, aggressive, risk-taking, stoic, heterosexual, homophobic and transphobic, emotionally inexpressive, hostile to femininity, and dominant.

Programs that engage men and boys in health promotion and violence prevention are proliferating. Many aim to foster “healthy masculinities”, using education and support to involve men and boys in adopting more positive or gender-equitable forms of selfhood and relating. 

This paper offers a critical stocktake of 15 'healthy masculinities' programs in one state in Australia, assessing them against common standards for gender-transformative programming among men and boys. 

What role do fathers play in violence prevention and building a non-violent future?

This new white paper by Professor Michael Flood explores fathers' roles in violence prevention. It was launched at the inaugural Fathering Summit on March 14 2024, in Sydney (Australia), hosted by the Fathering Project.

The paper notes that:
1. Positive father involvement is good for children, mothers, families, and fathers themselves
2. Positive father involvement and non-violence go together

Men must call each other out when they see disrespect, because the behaviour we walk past is the behaviour we accept, writes Keith Tracey-Patte.

It’s now four years since the death of Hannah Clarke and her children and 10 years since the murder of Luke Batty. And here we are again. In the last seven days we have seen three separate atrocities and the violent deaths of more women, children and men.


Share our action list on your social media (hashtags #16DaysofActivism #IDEVAW #MaleAlly #MenChallengingSexism) and tell people why you are taking part in our 16 days of action. Email this list to your male friends, relatives and all male allies to help spread the word and increase men’s support for feminist causes.

I am a Black man in prison, and I want to talk about trauma. I want us all to be able to talk about trauma.

In engaging men and boys in preventing domestic and sexual violence, what do we need? In the following, I identify key ways forward, addressing both our overall approach in violence prevention and particular prevention strategies. I focus on primary prevention – on efforts to prevent the initial perpetration of domestic, family and sexual violence.

Apart from what it means in their own lives, men’s exposure to violence, trauma and adversity are key risk factors for men’s self-inflicted harm and their use of violence against others. Equimundo’s report, Making the Connections: Masculinities and Male Trauma, highlights the role masculinities play in boys and men’s ability to cope with their impact.