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My City Logan | 26 March 2021

One of the young men behind a Logan-based service encouraging men and boys to change their attitudes towards consent and respectful relationships has joined the Queensland Government’s Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Council.

YFS Men4Respect coordinator Andrew Taukolo recently took part in the council’s first meeting for 2021, joining other members in aiming to change the way the community thinks about and responds to domestic and family violence.

Since his first meeting, Andrew has attracted national media attention, influencing the conversation about how to change young men and boys’ attitudes towards consent and respect, YFS Chief Executive Cath Bartolo said. 

“Andrew has taken his role with gusto, with appearances on ABC Radio National’s Breakfast program and the ABC News TV channel in the past week,” Ms Bartolo said.  

“He is drawing from his on-the-ground experience, which has demonstrated that young men need to reclaim masculinity – the positive and respectful ideals of being a man.”

YFS’ Men4Respect is a peer-to-peer respectful relationships program run by young men, for young men. 

The Men4Respect team supports young men in Logan and surrounds to understand the line between what is healthy and what is harmful in relationships and reclaiming what it means to “be a man”. 

Andrew said many young men already know what a respectful man looks like. 

“The real issue is the pressure that men place on young men and boys and the promotion of toxic ideas,” he said.

“They are constantly confronted with concepts such as the more female partners you have, the more of a man you become, and the more emotion you display, the less of a man you are.

“We are empowering young men to have the skills to understand what consent and respectful relationships look like, to have empathy towards women and to be active bystanders whenever women talk about their experiences of sexual assault.”

Active bystanders are people who say or do something when they see harassment and discrimination.

The Queensland Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Council met recently for the first time in 2021. It was the first meeting for Men4Respect coordinator Andrew Taukolo, pictured second from the left at the back.