The initiative has been launched just weeks after a St Kilda player was fined after using a gay slur against Collingwood’s Harry O’Brien.
Andrew Demetriou, the chief executive officer of the AFL, is leading the campaign, which aims to stamp out homophobic slurs in both the sport and the workplace.
Demetriou said: “A campaign of this nature promoting respect for each other, healthy relationships and a safe, inclusive environment is imperative if we are to affect positive cultural change.”
According to a poll by Gay and Lesbian Health Victoria, a sexual health association in the Australian State of Victoria, said that more than 25% of openly gay people had been verbally abused in the last year.
Mental health advocates and the police force are also partnering the campaign. Chief Commissioner Ken Lay said that the police force condemned all forms of violence and bullying. “There are laws in place to protect the rights of all Victorians and we encourage people to report any acts to police,” he said.
The campaign was officially launched by Victorian State health minister and will run on posters and on television for the next 12 months.