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Own Goal for Men’s Health Campaign

Own Goal for Men’s Health Campaign

Using vagina-like imagery to promote men’s health reflects warped thinking about what constitutes a healthy man, says Neville Robertson, a member of Stop Demand.

“I would have thought that respect for women was a fundamental part of being a healthy man. Reducing women to sexual body parts is the polar opposite.”

A poster developed by M&C Saatchi for the Men’s Health Trust in fact depicts a set of hugely magnified set of vocal chords but Men’s Health Trust chairman Phil Clemas has been quoted as saying that “It does look like a vagina so there's bound to be some people doing a double take when they see the advertisements initially.''

Clemas claims that rather than setting out to shock, the campaign was genuinely about getting men to talk about their health and picturing vocal chords seemed the obvious choice.

Stop Demand says that while the intent of the campaign, getting men to talk about their health, was laudable and one it fully supports, basing a campaign on sexualising women was offensive.

“Not only is it offensive to women, it gives a very distorted picture of what it means to be a man,” says Robertson.

In recent weeks, the nation has been called upon to soul-search over the sexually callous attitudes of some young men towards young women, an issue that was given prominence through the so-called Roast Busters’ case. A senior police officer asked the nation: “Where is the respect?”

“The same question could be asked of Men’s Health Trust,” says Robertson.


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