The Danny Green Stop the Coward Punch Campaign is thrilled to announce is has received a $1 million grant from the Morrison Government through the Proceeds of Crime to stop the scourge of unprovoked acts of violence and to educate people about the devastating effects of a single coward punch.
Minister for Home Affairs Karen Andrews MP joined Campaign Founder Danny Green in Perth on Wednesday to announce the new funding which will be allocated over a four-year period.
Four-time world champion boxer and founder of the Stop the Coward Punch Campaign Danny Green said awareness, intervention and education are critical to stop the source of vicious coward punch attacks.
“On behalf of the entire Campaign, I would like to personally thank the Morrison Government and in particular, Minister Andrews, for their recognition and support of such an important cause,” said Mr Green.
“As we know, through the findings of our world-class research in partnership with Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine (VIFM), more than 172 Australians have needlessly died from coward punch assaults since 2000.
“Whilst it is very pleasing the numbers have fallen, they are still happening, and one death is one too many. A coward punch assault causes significant life-long physical and mental injuries so the need for awareness and education to change behaviour is essential.
“The fact is that literally thousands of people including the victims, the perpetrators, the witnesses, first responders and friends and family are all traumatised by coward punch attacks every year in Australia. It has to stop and this funding will help us do just that.”
This funding comes at a crucial time and will help the Campaign to spread the message through the community including schools and higher education, sport clubs and hospitality venues.
Former Victoria Police Chief Commissioner and Coward Punch Campaign Board Member Christine Nixon likened the drop in coward punch fatalities over time to a reduction in the national road toll.
“Analysis of data from the National Coroners Information System shows there has been a remarkable reduction of fatal coward punch deaths from 2012 to 2018,” Ms Nixon said.
“This continued decline in deaths is important and can be likened to reductions over time in deaths on the road. Continuous educational, enforcement and environmental interventions are needed to reduce the road toll. This financial and political support of the Stop the Coward Punch Campaign will further contribute to the further reduction in this horrendous, often fatal, crime.”
According to Danny Green, the Campaign education package in conjunction with Cool Australia which was launched in February, features curriculum-aligned lessons raising awareness of the coward punch.
“Our education tool includes science lessons concentrating on forces and biology, drama lessons exploring elements of drama and the theatrical conventions used in the Stop the Coward Punch Campaign, a media lesson focussing on culture jamming, and health and physical education lessons exploring the roles of bystanders and upstanders in preventing violence,” Mr Green said.
“We started the Coward Punch Campaign in 2012 to raise awareness of the devastating impact of coward punches in Australia. This work intensified in 2019 with the inaugural Coward Punch Week. Our world-class research and education tool is central to our mission to end the coward punch.”
Since Danny and the Campaign started using the Coward Punch expression in 2012, the term has progressively replaced ‘one-punch’ and ‘king hit’ in the Australian vernacular to describe these deadly assaults. It has been used by judges and magistrates in handing down verdicts and sentences to perpetrators and is regularly quoted in associated media reports.