Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney has welcomed the Brumby Government’s new code of conduct, which encourages the media to use images responsibly and reduce the impact of negative body image on young Victorians.
“I hope to see this code will hopefully be taken up by all Victorian media and it will be sure to have positive benefits for the young people of Western Victoria,” Ms Tierney said.
Ms Tierney said the Code contained four clauses regarding:
• The use and disclosure of altered and enhanced images;
• Representation of a diversity of body shapes;
• Fair placement of diet, exercise and cosmetic surgery advertising; and
• Avoiding the glamorisation of severely underweight models or celebrities.
The Code was a result of a Parliamentary Inquiry into young people and body image which recommended the Government, in partnership with industry and key stakeholders, develop a code of conduct for the display of images in the media.
A number of key people from the media, fashion and advertising industries then advised the Government on the role the media can play in the responsible portrayal of images to young people.
Ms Tierney said the resulting Code was a significant step in changing the way images are portrayed and in improving body image in young people.
The Government has received messages of support for the Code from industry, academic and celebrity supporters, including radio and television personality Jo Stanley, former swimmer Nicole Livingstone OAM, aerobics champion Sue Stanley and netballer Sharelle McMahon, along with leading fashion, retail and media organisations.
Youth Affairs Minister James Merlino, who launched the Code of Conduct on Body Image at Federation Square today, said he urged the media, fashion and advertising industries to support the Code.
“Certain images the media, advertising and fashion industries choose to promote contribute enormously to young people’s perception of themselves,” Mr Merlino said.
“Young Victorians have told us they want to see images that reflect the real body shapes we see everyday in the community and we are proud to be making a stand on this important issue.
The Brumby Government’s ‘Go for your life’ $2.1 million commitment over four years to positive body image includes community awareness programs in regional and metropolitan Victoria, media and industry awareness partnerships and a body image grants program.