Offensive advertising to be taken off road

  • Legislation banning offensive advertising on WA vehicles passes WA Parliament
  • Legislation will prohibit offensive advertising on vehicles
  • Amendments will empower the Department of Transport to cancel or refuse vehicle licence or transfer applications if the owner refuses to remove offensive advertising

Offensive advertising material that is sexually explicit, discriminating and offensive will be banned on vehicles in Western Australia, with new laws passing WA Parliament today.

The Road Traffic (Vehicles) Amendment (Offensive Advertising) Bill 2022 will provide the Department of Transport the power to cancel or refuse vehicle licence applications for vehicles that promote advertising that is deemed offensive by Ad Standards.

Under the changes, Western Australians who believe advertising on a vehicle to be degrading, obscene or insensitive can lodge a complaint with Ad Standards who will assess the advertisement against the Australian Association of National Advertisers Code of Ethics.

If the advertisement is found to be in breach of the Code of Ethics, the advertiser will be given notice by Ad Standards to modify or remove the advertisement. If a vehicle owner fails to comply, Ads Standards will refer the matter to the Department of Transport who will be empowered to suspend or cancel the vehicle licence under the new legislation.

The Bill will align WA with other Australian jurisdictions that have implemented similar legislation to prohibit offensive advertising on vehicles.

As stated by Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:

“The passing of this legislation sends a strong message that our Government will not tolerate degrading, obscene or insensitive advertising or slogans on vehicles in Western Australia.

“Some of the material we have seen in the past has been appalling, and these changes will ensure there are appropriate powers in place to stop it in the future.

“People deserve to live in a community that is free from disrespectful language and behaviour, and our Government is committed to preventing and ending violence against women.”

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