Thursday 31st July 2014

The Australian Christian Lobby has congratulated the Queensland government for leading the way in Australia in responding to community concerns regarding sexualised outdoor advertising.

ACL’s Queensland Director Wendy Francis welcomed the government’s commitment to introduce fines to penalise advertisers that do not comply with the industry’s code of ethics.

The commitment was made in the Queensland Government response to the Health and Community Services Committee Report No. 36 Inquiry into sexually explicit outdoor advertising.

Ms Francis said classification issues generally fall to the federal government but it has failed to act on the recommendations from numerous inquiries and reports.

“The state government has responded to the community concerns around sexualised outdoor advertising and found a way it can help bring outdoor advertising in line with community standards by introducing fines for offenders,” Ms Francis said.

“This is part of its overall commitment to make Queensland the safest place in Australia to raise a child,” Ms Francis said.

“The sexualisation of our everyday environment is contributing to a culture where there is an increase in sexual assaults, eating disorders in young children, and depression”, she said.

Ms Francis said today’s announcement would mean companies like Wicked Campers, which has consistently ignored the self-regulated Advertising Standards Board’s rulings, would face fines.

Whilst Ms Francis said today’s announcement was a step in the right direction but she said more still needed to be done.

“The Advertising Standards Board is a self-regulated body. Currently, they alone hand down rulings against its advertisers and there is no recourse once their decision is made, making it difficult to keep advertisers accountable to the community,” she said.

“At the very least we need a government avenue for people to go to if their complaint to the ASB is unsuccessful”, she said.