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T-shirt sparks NT vilification debate

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 21 August 2003


The Northern Territory's anti-discrimination commissioner is recommending changes be made to territory laws so complaints can be based on vilification.

Tony Fitzgerald's comments follow a series of complaints prompted by a T-shirt which Indigenous artist Richard Bell wore at an award ceremony in Darwin last week.

A slogan on the T-shirt read: "White girls can't hump."

Mr Fitzgerald says the message is not discriminatory but it may constitute vilification.

"We're all aware that vilification, let's just restrict it to race for the purpose of this discussion, can result in people being hurt and seriously offended and taking action that might even result in violence, so it's important that we can have ways to redress it," he said.


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