beyondblue’sThe Invisible Discriminator campaign has gone viral, with its centrepiece video notching up more than 1 million YouTube views since launching three weeks ago.
The clip depicts non-Indigenous Australians engaging in acts of subtle racism, such as avoiding Indigenous Australians or treating them with suspicion. Its aim is to show the devastating psychological impact that all forms of racism have on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
beyondblue CEO Georgie Harman said the video’s popularity highlighted the need for the campaign and showed that Australians are often surprised by the effects of subtle racism on mental health.
“This is an Australian-first campaign and the response to it has been overwhelmingly positive,” she said. “We are grateful that so many Australians have liked, shared and watched this video because we know that racial discrimination continues to fuel the tragic statistics around Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing. This includes the fact that Indigenous people are twice as likely to die by suicide as non-Indigenous Australians and almost three times as likely to be psychologically distressed.
“We launched The Invisible Discriminator because often when people engage in subtle racism they don’t realise how harmful it is. Racism, whether it’s subtle or overt, is still racism and it ruins lives. Just like other form of discrimination, it leads to distress, that in turn can lead to depression and anxiety. Research commissioned by beyondblue shows that many non-Indigenous Australians still engage in racist acts towards Indigenous people, but I believe this campaign’s messages along with the reaction it’s getting means we are on to something here.”
Shortened versions of the YouTube video have been broadcast on national television and the campaign has also featured on digital media.
The video’s popularity on YouTube means that, once combined with views from Facebook and through digital advertising, it has been seen online by more than 2 million people.