This report is from November last year but we felt it deserved revisiting
We whinge about Today Tonight frequently but they have done well with this. Actual facts and statistics rather than just an ill-informed opinion.
PRESENTER: Now to the campaign to dob in racists. It has already started and the warning is clear. Watch what you say and who you say it to or you risk being branded a racist and paying a hefty price. Clare Brady has more.
CLARE BRADY: We’d like to think we’re not but the secret’s out.Australia is a land of racists.It’s embarrassing but apparently true.
WOMAN IN STREET: Too many different religions.
MAN IN HOODIE: I think some people is racist.
MAN IN STREET: Many people different ideas.
MAN IN RED T SHIRT: Yeah I’ve been..been the only Australian on the train before.
CLARE BRADY: But you understand they’re now Australians? They’ve adopted Australia.
MAN IN RED T SHIRT: Yeah I accept that but it can be intimidating … just the unknown.
CLARE BRADY: We may embrace each other’s cuisines but lurking underneath is suspicion towards anyone new.
PROFESSOR KEVIN DUNN: They’re shocking in some regards.
CLARE BRADY: Professor Kevin Dunn is behind the survey that has served us up some food for thought.
PROFESSOR KEVIN DUNN: About 11% of Australians would believe for instance that some races
are superior some are inferior (than) others. Racially supremacy.
CLARE BRADY: It took a 12 year long survey of more than 12 and a half thousand (12,500) Australians to show half of us (50%) harbour anti-Muslim sentiment, a quarter (25%) are anti-Semitic and one in three (33.3%) admit some feelings of racism towards those that were here first.
And postcodes can carry a legacy. The survey found that NSW and Queensland are the most racist states. Victoria is one of the most tolerant.
Our workplaces are unforgiving.
PROFESSOR KEVIN DUNN: 17% of Australians have experienced racism within their workplace. Amongst those who were born in Sri Lanka or India the rate is at 40%. If you are a Muslim Australian the rates are between 50 and 60%.
COMMISSIONER KAREN TOOHEY: Most people don’t report racism or other experiences of hate. People think nothing is going to happen. They are afraid of the repercussions.
CLARE BRADY: Racial ignorance is something that Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner Karen Toohey doesn’t tolerate. She heads up a new anti-hate campaign which encourages people to dob in a racist.
COMMISSIONER KAREN TOOHEY: We’ve had reports of Aboriginal people being refused service and being refused bookings in restaurants..uh..we’ve certainly had reports of people being followed around shops because they are from particular ethnic backgrounds.
CLAIRE BRADY: Here is a letter already handed in. It was put in the letterbox of a newly arrived man from Sudan.
VOICEOVER: “We’ve had security guards walk the street at night because of these little black ***** that come over here and want to cause problems”
CLARE BRADY: The letter went on and on, abuse in every line – a racist and gutless attack.
COMMISSIONER KAREN TOOHEY: We will respond or write to the person or contact them to give them information about what they can do. They can make a formal complaint to us.
CLARE BRADY: Serious cases of vilification will be handled by the police and the perpetrator could face up to six months’ gaol. Fines for individuals are more than $6,000 and corporations caught out being racist more than $42,000.
The campaign for now only exists in Victoria.
CLARE BRADY: One of Australia’s most talented performers, Kamahl, would like to see racists dobbed in nationwide. He knows all about racial taunts.
KAMAHL: People are not really concerned about their fellow man you know… and we can go to the Moon but we do not know our neighbour you know.
CLARE BRADY:But 2UE’s breakfast host Jason Morrison doesn’t believe in tiptoeing around the issue. To him it is a politically correct bandaid that must be ripped off.
JASON MORRISON: If you want to put an end to any discussion about anything call someone a sexist or a racist. It’s over. That is the great determinator of everything in this country. Politicians are frightened for example to confront our failing multicultural policies because they fear being called racist. Some things have got to be talked about. Sometimes
they have to be a little uncomfortable to be talked about but they’ve got to be done because if they are not all that will happen is that we’ll have the attitudes festering in the community and the problem’s not resolved.
CLAIRE BRADY: The solution may be simple.
KAMAHL: We’re just afraid of things we don’t know. Learn. Learn to love. And try not to hate.