New survey shows attitudes towards discrimination and denigration in media changing

New survey shows attitudes towards discrimination and denigration in media changing

June 24, 2021

Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon has welcomed results of the Broadcasting Standards Authority’s (BSA) survey showing attitudes towards discrimination and denigration on TV and radio appear to be changing with younger New Zealanders showing a lower tolerance for it.

According to the BSA, the research found that younger people are significantly more likely to agree with Authority’s decisions that uphold complaints of discrimination and denigration in broadcast content, and less likely to agree with decisions that do not.

“It is heartening to see from this survey that the tolerance of our young people towards discrimination being broadcast across Aotearoa New Zealand has lowered. This indicates the possibility of a brighter future in terms of race relations in this country,” Foon said.

“Unfortunately, many of those surveyed from ethnic communities report experiencing discrimination and denigration regularly so hopefully this lower tolerance level will lead to more people being ‘upstanders’ and not bystanders when they witness discrimination of any kind.”

Respondents were also aware that unacceptable depictions of discriminatory and denigrating content have a negative emotional impact and can be harmful to already marginalised communities.

“This awareness is a positive step towards action. In regards to further action, the Human Rights Commission will be working on hearing more from Aotearoa New Zealand in terms of your thoughts on a national action plan against racism in the coming weeks.”