Charity organisation Shine is raising awareness of domestic abuse after sporting matches with the launch ‘No Excuses,’ a hard-hitting radio campaign by creative agency Whybin/TBWA that features high profile rugby commentators Tony ‘TJ’ Johnson and Scott ‘Sumo’ Stevenson in three different radio clips.
In the clips, titled ‘The Gloves Are Off’, ‘One Sided’ and ‘Fireworks’ the duo appear to be commentating on a rugby match, which starts to get a bit rough, but it’s soon revealed they are commentating on a domestic violence situation.
A woman at the end of the clip explains: “A sports team losing is no excuse for domestic violence, there are no excuses”, and also provides information of how to donate to the charity.
The campaign is part of a 20-week positive change programme to help men who have become abusive towards their families to change their behaviour and develop respectful relationships.
Shine’s website features a range of literature on the link between sports teams losing and how this could increase the risk of domestic violence.
On the eve of the 2011 World Cup, Shine published an article by Debbie Hager and Diane Woolson Neville that looked into the reasons why domestic violence tends to spike after sporting losses.
The pair found that hyper-masculinity associated with sporting events when combined with high alcohol consumption led to an increase in cases of domestic violence:
"There is evidence of a link between major sporting events and increased sexual, physical and emotional violence against women, a link that has already been identified by the New Zealand Police. This link has been explained in two ways. The hyper-masculinity and resulting peer behaviours associated with some team sports and the excessive alcohol consumption that occurs during and after major games. We know that the Rugby World Cup is heavily sponsored by alcohol companies, that legislation to enable a proliferation of alcohol outlets has been passed, and that the virtues of hyper masculine behaviour are being extolled in the build up to the games."
Given that these problems are still evident at sporting events today and since we are approaching the kick off of Super Rugby as well the Cricket World Cup, Shine has made its latest push to remind sports fans that domestic violence—particularly after sporting losses—remains a major problem for the nation.
According to statistics on the Shine website, every six minutes New Zealand police attend a domestic abuse incident, one in three women experience physical and/or sexual abuse from a male (ex)partner in their lifetime, a woman is killed every 3.5 weeks by her partner or ex-partner, and a child is killed every five weeks by a member of their own family. What's even worse is that police estimate that reported domestic abuse represents only 18 percent of the true incidence.