Melbourne, Jan 15 (ANI): Feminists are calling for action to be taken after a newly appointed Australian navy submarine commander suggested that female sailors wearing bikinis would help boost recruitment.
Commander Tom Phillips, appointed to the helm of Collins class submarine HMAS Farncomb last year, was asked in an interview with a men's magazine Ralph "if female sailors all had to be hot and had to wear bikinis, would that help recruitment?"
He was quoted as saying: "It would certainly get the right demographic of young men in. I'm not sure how feasible it is, however."
According to the Daily Telegraph, Phillips also revealed the naval uniform works to "either pull a chick or get in a fight" and said the submarine equivalent of the mile-high club is the "going down club".
Now, the Federal Opposition and feminists have called for action over the article and Minister for Defence Warren Snowden has described the comments as 'utterly unacceptable'.
Despite bipartisan attempts to improve the recruitment and retention of women in the defence forces, Liberal MP Bob Baldwin said Phillips' remarks were 'totally inappropriate and absolutely offensive.'
"If these comments are to be attributed to this newly appointed commander, I think it will go down as one of the shortest careers in naval history," News.com.au quoted Baldwin, the Opposition Defence Personnel spokesman, as saying.
"From a commanding officer of the Royal Australian Navy one would expect a bit more maturity and a respectful attitude to his fellow men and women in the services. He owes them an apology," Baldwin added.
Eva Cox, chair of the Womens Lobby Australia, said the article reflected 'the Navy's limited view of women as bodies rather than brains'. (ANI)