[*Update: FFSA have replied. Their response is posted at the bottom of the article.]
A few weeks ago we wrote an article on SBS about a local South Australian soccer club hosting a men's night complete with strippers down at the club. The event sparked a lot of discussion on our Facebook page and in response we wrote this piece highlighting some of the main issues with a men's sporting club participating in the purchase of sexual services.
Only a matter of weeks later, we have learned about yet another South Australian club venue hosting a similar event - and they may have gotten away with it if the so-called 'Adult Entertainment' agency had not posted a photo from the night on Instagram, complete with the club's logo in the background.
In this case, however, Adelaide Victory (the team logo featured in the picture above) are a part of the Football Federation Australia (FFA).
The FFA have a strict code of conduct which aims to "aims to promote and strengthen the reputation of football in Australia by establishing a standard of performance, behaviour and professionalism for its participants and stakeholders."
The code includes but is not limited to:
A Member must not bring FFA or the game of football into Disrepute. (Disrepute means any conduct, statement or appearance in public that is damaging to reputation.)
discriminatory behaviour, including public disparagement of, discrimination against,
or vilification of, a person on account of an Attribute;
harassment, including sexual harassment or any unwelcome sexual conduct which
makes a person feel offended, humiliated and/or intimidated where that reaction is
reasonable in the circumstances;
offensive behaviour, including offensive, obscene, provocative or insulting gestures,
language or chanting;
- provocation or incitement of hatred or violence;
any other conduct, behaviour or statement that materially injures the reputation and
goodwill of FFA or football generally.
- discriminatory behaviour, including public disparagement of, discrimination against,
Australia has a serious problem with domestic violence. Recent government initiatives to educate and reduce men's violence against women highlight the major drivers behind this scourge - gender inequality, sexist and hostile attitudes towards women, a culture of objectification and disrespect for women. When men treat women as objects of sexual recreation, when men justify their entitlement to use and exploit women, when men pay for sexual services - they are part of the problem.
Far from being harmless fun, the sexual exploitation of women in the stripping industry and other forms of the sex trade has a great impact on woman involved. See research from Coalition Against Trafficking in Women Australia:
"In a US study, women in strip clubs frequently reported being ‘spat on’ and ‘sprayed with beer’, they report having cigarettes flicked at them as well as trash, condoms, golf balls and even dead animals (Holsopple, 1998). Men reportedly ‘pull…women’s hair’, ‘yank…them by the arms and ankles, rip… their costumes and attempt…to pull their clothes off’. Women are ‘bitten, licked, slapped, punched, and pinched’ whilst male buyers attempt to penetrate them vaginally and anally with ‘fingers, dollar bills, and bottles’, according to the testimony of Kelly Holsopple who worked in a strip club for a number of years, and then went back to research the venues (Holsopple, 1998). In her research she found that 100 per cent of strippers she interviewed reported being abused within the clubs. Holsopple’s research is highly relevant to the Australian context where dancers face violence not only from their male ‘customers’, but also from club owners." Read more here.
We have reached out to the FFA for comment directly and also notified them on social media. They forwarded our request for comment to FFSA who have replied.
Thank you for the opportunity to provide comment however it seems that the event was not in conjunction with Adelaide Victory.
Adelaide Victory share the venue with a number of organisations and are not responsible for the hiring out of the venue. Following consultation with Adelaide Victory, we can confirm that they were not aware of the event and the event was organised by an organisation not affiliated to Football Federation South Australia.
Adelaide Victory will be contacting the entertainment company to remove the image to ensure that their club and logo are not associated further.
On behalf of FFSA
This defence is unconvincing in the wake of the photo below which appears to indicate this is not the first time...
Last year Dantes Entertainment posted this on Twitter complete with #AdelaideVictory hashtag and logo:
After drawing this second flyer to their attention the FFSA have replied:
On further discussion with Adelaide Victory we can confirm the following:
The non-affiliated club (to which Football Federation SA has no jurisdiction over) have informed that they will be providing a formal apology to Adelaide Victory for the situation involving Victory’s club logo appearing in the photo in question from May as a reflection that Adelaide Victory had no involvement with the event.
Adelaide Victory did not go through with the event in 2015 you have referred to
The Adelaide Victory President has confirmed that while he is in his current position, the club will not host any events such as the one advertised in 2015 or held in May
Should clubs have guidelines on what events occur on their premises?
Let FFSA know what you think.
FFSA Contact Details:
Address: Gate 5, Holden St, Coopers Stadium, Hindmarsh SA, 5007
Phone: (08) 8340 3088
Fax: (08) 8340 3188
Mail: PO Box 593, Hindmarsh 5007