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Podcast series released as final part of campaign to tackle gender-based violence

  • Multi-award-winning #IsThisOK? campaign to release podcast series.
  • The podcasts feature men from across Greater Manchester discussing unacceptable behaviours often faced by women and how to tackle them.
  • Writer, journalist, and influencer Noz Choudry hosts the #IsThisOK? podcast.
  • Half of men surveyed in Greater Manchester have seen the #IsThisOK? campaign since it launched in 2021. Half of those say it made them think, feel, or want to act differently.

As part of The Mayor of Greater Manchester’s multi-award-winning #IsThisOK? campaign – aimed at tackling gender-based violence – a podcast series is being released, featuring men talking to each other about the behaviour women and girls face.

Hosted by writer, journalist, and influencer Noz Choudry, the #IsThisOK? three-episode podcast brings together men with different viewpoints to have an open discussion about attitudes and behaviours towards women and how they can tackle gender-based violence.

It is part of the #IsThisOK? campaign launched by Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, in December 2021. It is aimed at men and boys calling on them to discuss why unacceptable behaviour faced by women and girls – such as unwanted comments or touching and sexual harassment – are not OK.

#IsThisOK? encourages people to call it out if they see their friends, colleagues or family members demonstrating these behaviours. The campaign is part of Greater Manchester’s 10-year Gender-Based Violence Strategy published in September 2021.

The first phase of the campaign, which launched with a powerful video on December 16, 2021, has so far received more than 5.3 million views on social media and won two CIPR awards, including Best Public Sector campaign for the North West region.

GMCA commissioned a survey of men and boys, aged 18-35, to measure the impact of #IsThisOK? since its launch in 2021, which showed that over half of men surveyed have seen the campaign. Half of those say it made them think, feel, or want to act differently, with a third saying the campaign made them want to find out more about gender-based violence in Greater Manchester.

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “The safety of women and girls across Greater Manchester has and always will be one of my biggest priorities.

“I launched the campaign back in 2021 because I knew we needed to do something to start a conversation and drive behaviour change. These behaviours, mostly faced by women from men, leave those on the receiving end feeling vulnerable, frightened and unsafe. Women and girls have had to put up with this for far too long and I want to make it clear that it does not have a place here or anywhere else.

“Hearing men talk to each other about these issues in this podcast series feels like a fitting addition to what has been an invaluable piece of work through the #IsThisOK? campaign. I’m really pleased that through our campaign alone since 2021, findings from our survey suggest that over half of men aged 18-35 in Greater Manchester have been reached. There is much more to do, but #IsThisOK? has played a big part in beginning to change behaviours to make Greater Manchester a safer place for all.”

Kate Green, Deputy Mayor for Policing, Crime, Criminal Justice and Fire, said “Our research shows that behaviours including sexual harassment, sexual jokes and comments, and unwanted touching in public are perpetrated primarily by young men and boys, aged 18-35, towards women and girls. That is why #IsThisOK? is aimed at young men and boys, calling on them to educate themselves about why these behaviours make women feel uncomfortable or threatened.

“This podcast series really highlights the power of the conversation and I hope it inspires men and boys to talk to each other about how women and girls are treated, ask #IsThisOK? and be empowered to challenge others.

“#IsThisOK? is very much part of our wider work to deliver Greater Manchester’s Gender-Based Violence Strategy. The 10-year plan is working to tackle gender-based violence across the city-region, and we are two years into delivering on its aims and remain committed to tackling all forms of gender-based violence and the attitudes that underpin it.”

Bev Hughes, Assistant Deputy Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “The success of the first video we launched as part of #IsThisOK? campaign in 2021 showed us just how much appetite and need there is for change, with it reaching 5.3 million views on social media. This video powerfully captured the sort of sexual harassment faced by women and girls daily and the reaction to it showed us how much the experiences resonated with people.

“The initial video has been followed by a major campaign featuring a range of materials, including a TV advert and three-part film series – this content has also been viewed by millions of people, largely the men and boys aged 18-35 that we were trying to reach.

“But this isn’t just about getting views on social media. We have taken the campaign into communities, from supporting workshops at some of our region’s schools, to getting the campaign shown out there to young men, including on the main stage of this year’s Parklife festival.”

Nooruddean Choudry, host of #IsThisOK? podcast, said: 'This is clearly an issue which overwhelmingly affects women in our community, but it's unfair for the onus to be on women to find a solution. If women had the power to solve the problem, it would already be solved. Men need to take responsibility and feel empowered - both to question their own behaviour and to challenge the bad behaviour they see in others.'

Daniel, guest from #IsThisOK? podcast, said: "I wanted to get involved with this podcast to show that young men in Greater Manchester are starting to play a role in changing the story for women in our city. We are all affected by gender-based violence and it’s important that more men step up. I hope that men in Greater Manchester listen to the podcast, learn something new and feel able to call out negative behaviours in the future.”

Watch #IsThisOK? podcast on YouTube here:


Listen to the podcast on Spotify (and available wherever else you get your podcasts) here: #IsThisOK Podcast | Podcast on Spotify

Find out more about #IsThisOK? on the campaign website:

Article Published: 06/09/2023 15:40 PM