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19th Oct 2022

Angry dad loses it as workplace says stop using the words ‘father’ and ‘mother’

Tobi Akingbade

The move has not gone down well

A furious father has made his feelings with his workplace very clear after advice was given to stop using the word ‘father’ and ‘mother’ in a bid to be more inclusive.

Sydney-based queer health organisation ACON, which is primarily funded by the NSW Government and also receives money from the ABC, advised workplaces to abandon the terms to promote LGBTQ inclusion.

The lobby group has suggested the words ‘mother’ and ‘father’ be replaced with ‘primary caregiver’ and ‘secondary caregiver’.

In a training video, HR staff were told to avoid using gendered terms when writing office policies to make sure gender norms are not reinforced.

The video states” “When we continue to use terms that buy into that, such as ‘maternity leave’, ‘paternity leave’, ‘mother’, ‘dads’, all of these terms, that’s reinforcing those gender norms.”

“So using terms like ‘primary caregivers’, ‘secondary caregiver’, making sure we’re not referring to partners using gender terms like ‘mother’, like ‘dad’, is really important.”

Radio 2GB host Ben Fordham, who is also a father, slammed the initiative as a ‘”rack pot idea” being pushed by an organisation with an “official relationship with the ABC”

ACON, which stands for AIDS Council of NSW, receives $13million in government funding every year and $4million from organisations who sign up as members.

He wrote on Facebook: ‘This is a group that doesn’t want anyone saying ‘mothers’ or ‘fathers’. If you’re taking advice from this mob, you need a check up”

“Pay them out of your own pocket. Because we don’t consent to our money being spent on this crap”

Listeners were quick to share their opinions in the comments.

One wrote: “I am a Mother, a Grandmother and I will be dammed if I will be identified as anything other than that. I am a woman and proud of it.”

A second added: “It’s time to ban lobby groups and the funding to ABC – they do not represent all Australians so all Australians should not be paying for them.”

In a statement addressing the ‘repeated attacks’ in recent months from ‘opponents of LGBTQ equality, ACON said the goal of the employer support program was to create more inclusive workplaces for LGBTQ employees.

“Our members strive to be inclusive of all employees and create inclusive workplaces for all Australians. Pride in Diversity provides members with LGBTQ subject matter expertise in this aspect of their diversity and inclusion strategy,” it stated.

“Pride in Diversity was established following requests from employers, seeking advice and support in this area to enable parity with their international offices and emerging best practice in diversity and inclusion.”

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