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Adshel reinstates safe gay sex campaign after homophobia backlash

Outdoor company Adshel has backed down to a growing backlash against its decision to pull down billboards promoting safe sex after it was accused of homophobia.

The company said that its reason for reversing its decision was because when it had initially acted on complaints it did not realise they had been organised by the Australian Christian Lobby.

In a press release this afternoon, the company said:

“Following ACL Queensland director Wendy Francis’ acknowledgement that the complaints received by Adshel, Brisbane City Council and the Advertising Standards Bureau regarding QAHC’s campaign have been orchestrated by the Australian Christian Lobby, Adshel is reinstating the ‘Rip and Roll’ campaign.

Adshel earlier responded to a series of complaints by removing the campaign from its media panels yesterday. None of the complaints indicated any liaison with the ACL, so Adshel was made to believe that they originated from individual members of the public.”

Adshel CEO Steve McCarthy said the company had been the “target” of a an organised campaign by the ACL. He said in a statement: “It has now become clear that Adshel has been the target of a coordinated ACL campaign. This has led us to review our decision to remove the campaign and we will therefore reinstate the campaign with immediate effect.”

The company came under intense pressure throughout the day after news broke that it had removed the posters.

As well as protest messages on twitter and fast growing groups on Facebook, its Brisbane office was visited by demonstrators.

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