Why a council is changing pedestrian crossing symbols to female

It could be lights out for the little green man as one Melbourne council looks to introduce female symbols to their pedestrian crossings.

In a bid to “improve gender equality”, Brimbank Council in Melbourne’s west has asked for female walk and don’t walk figures to replace the male crossing silhouettes, the Herald Sun reports.

Mayor Margaret Giudice said the change could have a larger impact on the community than most would think.

“We know that improving gender equity leads to very positive outcomes for organisations and for our community … research shows societies with greater gender equity have lower rates of violence towards women and children,” she said.

“This council is committed to a community where men and women, and boys and girls, are treated equally.”

The Brimbank Council said changing the lights will improve gender equality. Source: Getty
The Brimbank Council said changing the lights will improve gender equality. Source: Getty

The council has nominated Perth Ave and Ballarat Rd as the first crossing to receive the new female lights.

Susie O’Brien from the Herald Sun told Sunrise the money needs to be spent doing something more practical to help women.

“There is a sort of rampant, radical gender ideology that seems to be driving some of these things,” O’Brien said.

“How putting a skirt on a stick figure crossing is going to save save women from violence, I fail to see.”

Ratepayers Victoria vice president Frank Sullivan said there simply had to be more pressing issues that should have the council’s attention.

“Councillors have got to realise what they are elected to do … they are completely out of touch and they’re moving into things that don’t concern them,” he told the Herald Sun.

Female traffic light signals are installed at the intersection of Swanston and Flinders streets on March 7, 2017 in Melbourne. Source: Getty
Female traffic light signals are installed at the intersection of Swanston and Flinders streets on March 7, 2017 in Melbourne. Source: Getty

A similar initiative in 2017 drew immediate backlash from taxpayers who labelled it as “political correctness gone mad” and a “political stunt”.

Ten female pedestrian lights were installed across Melbourne’s CBD worth more than $8,000 as part of the controversial trial.

Evan Mulholland, from free market think-tank the Institute of Public Affairs insisted there were surely better ways to spend the money.

“They should be putting their time and energy into fixing congestion on our roads (and) the Victorian Government should retreat from this politically correct trial and get on with practical solutions to deal with congestion,” he said.

Yahoo7 News has contacted Brimbank Council for comment.

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