It’s hard to think of anything more sexist and demeaning than a pub promoting semi-naked women wrestling in a pool of jelly to entertain men. But the Imperial Hotel Singleton thought jelly-wrestling, along with decorative bikini “girls” for men to look at, was an appropriate way to celebrate Australia Day. This is the same venue that threw a ‘Playboy Party’ to commemorate pimp Hugh Hefner, with free bunny.
“It’s just not good enough anymore.”
Local woman Lily Munroe couldn’t stand by and accept this objectification and humiliation of women under the guise of men’s entertainment. So she decided to act.
Lily contacted the Westpac Rescue Helicopter service, whose volunteers had been fundraising at the Singleton pub since 2010. She emailed the WRH CEO, the fundraising and marketing manager, the mayor, ten councillors and the local MP, and made an appointment with a representative at the WRH office.
Lily was initially met with resistance, with one representative from WRH dismissing her concerns and directing her back to the pub, claiming that the WRH fundraising at the Singleton pub was not “official” as the fundraisers were volunteers. When the representative called the volunteers on Lily’s insistence, they were shocked to learn of the event and decided to cancel their fundraising that evening and withdraw from the pub entirely.
Next, Lily then received a phone call from the WRH fundraising and marketing manager who called to confirm not only their withdrawal, but that the sexist event had also been cancelled due to WRH’s decision to withdraw. When the pub learned WRH were planning on withdrawing from all present and future association (a big drawcard for the pub on Friday nights) they said they would cancel the jelly-wrestling and not hold similar events in the future if WRH would stay.
The Imperial Hotel Singleton confirmed on their Facebook page the event had been cancelled: “Please note we have regretfully cancelled tonight’s jelly wrestling thanks to the do-gooder PC brigade. Good work ladies.” And good work it was!
If Lily hadn’t challenged the venue hosting this sexist and degrading event, it would still be going ahead. But she did.
If we speak out, we can affect real change.