Why Good Guys?

The Gender Attitudes Survey tested attitudes around gender roles – in the household, at school, at work and in the community and gives us a snapshot of where we’re at in New Zealand on gender.

The results show there are some strong ideas about what girls and women can do and be, and even more about what boys and men “should” be like – and what makes a “real man”.

  • 1 in 5 New Zealanders do not believe it’s ok for boys to play with dolls
  • 31% of men think that a man who doesn’t fight back when he’s pushed around will lose respect as a man
  • 19% of New Zealanders think it is more important for men to be seen in a position of power in NZ society

These strong ideas about being a man put sexual prowess, being strong and making money above empathy, being kind and vulnerability. But these are important skills for Good Guys and people of all genders.

The 3Ps describe these strong ideas for how boys and men should behave.

These strong ideas about how boys and men should behave hurt all of us. They lead to heavy drinking, poor health and dangerous driving. They create barriers for male survivors of sexual violence to get help. They contribute to men using violence towards women and other genders – from sexual harassment to catcalling to partner violence to rape.

Gender Equal NZ wants all New Zealanders to question ideas about “real men” that get in the way of men being Good Guys – with good relationships with their kids, partners, friends and everyone else.

Eight men kill themselves every week in New Zealand.

It’s time to change those old-fashioned attitudes, for all of us.