Campaign packs a punch
A GROUP of Coffs Coast martial artists are getting behind a one-punch campaign raising awareness of deadly “coward punch” attacks.
Following a string of violent incidents, the Don’t be a Dog campaign was established in January by martial arts instructor Michael Landas and Plantation Hotel general manager Daniel Knox.
Within a week, more than 66 families involved in martial arts had joined the campaign in support.
Mr Landas said it included families affected by previous one punch attacks.
“After we launched the campaign we had hundreds of people approach us from all aspects of the community asking what they could do to help,” Mr Landas said.
“It affects everybody, not just a single person – it affects the families, the children and the community in a ripple effect.”
Mr Landas said the campaign was designed to take a pre-emptive approach.
“There was a lack of awareness happening almost to the point where violence was viewed as being acceptable,” he said.
“We sat down and discussed different approaches and looked at the mentality of the would-be attacker.
“The ‘don’t be a dog’ hashtag is pretty direct because I think everybody knows what a dog act is.
“We can’t prevent the ones that have happened, but it’s really about raising awareness of offending behaviour.
“Our vision was to show that as martial artists, we build respect for each other and people who do these acts are low and no one thinks big of them.”
The next stage of the campaign will be circulation of posters with a catchphrase to deter violent behaviour.
The posters will be distributed in the Plantation Hotel and surrounding pubs/clubs, then on to the Liquor Accord to spread the message further.
Do you have an idea for a catchphrase to stop violent behaviour?
Have your say on our Facebook page this morning.