An Australian woman has led the charge for Father’s Day to be renamed ‘Special Person’s Day’, preventing children without fathers in their life feeling excluded.

Early childhood activist and University of Melbourne academic Dr Red Ruby Scarlet is attempting to change the day worldwide along with a significant group of her fellow academics.

Interviewed by Australia’a Today Tonight program, Dr Scarlet stated that children without fathers often suffer on this day unnecessarily, denying that this movement was a case of political correctness gone mad.

Check out the full interview here:

Dr Scarlett told the show’s host Rosanna Mangiarelli that modern families now don’t always include male parents, and that children with divorced parents can also be affected.

Dr Scarlett said:

“If we think about children’s rights and how they get to participate in a community and feel a sense of belonging, sometimes shifting the language around those emotive and important days can be significant and more inclusive than the current way we describe them,”

“There is a whole range of different family structures. We have single parent families, satellite families, extended families, lesbian and gay families.”

Now gaining support from a larger community of families, many schools are starting to hear about the idea and taking it on board instead of the usual Father’s Day activities.

Unsurprisingly the idea is also receiving criticism from many different groups (probably from the shopping industry too), with Dr Scarlett confused as to why the backlash is even occurring.

“There’s a lot of Australian research that has actually informed a lot of international research that has demonstrated children’s capacity to be really inclusive once they know about these ideas and they think, ‘Wow, why are people seeing this as a controversy?’,”

said Dr Scarlett.

“Why are we calling this political correctness when it is in fact about our rights? There has been a backlash but the backlash hasn’t necessarily come from families in those communities, it’s people outside those particular contexts.”

One person critical of Dr Scarlett’s idea is NSW Liberal minister David Elliott, telling the Daily Mail that he ‘can’t believe that someone who professes to be ‘enlightened’ would advocate such crap.’

@DavidElliottMP / Twitter

Elliott said:

“People still celebrate fatherhood even after their father and grandfathers have passed away, in fact for many people Father’s Day is a wonderful time of reflecting and remembering,”

“Dr Red Ruby Scarlet — you are the offensive one. Maybe we should start a campaign to address that.”

What do you guys think? Should we be more sensitive to the changing nature of the modern family, or should we continue the tradition of honouring our fathers once a year with gifts bought at the last minute from the supermarket?

And what about Mother’s Day… I LOVE MY MUMMY :’(