Theres more than one Struggle Street

First aired on the 3rd of May 2015, ‘Struggle Street,’ a controversial show screened by SBS, explores Mount Druitt, NSW. Its audience? Not happy.

This three part documentary although hounded for their brutal new form of storytelling and marketing of people lives, was highly rated. Causing the media to ponder issues of consent in the documentary genre. The Sydney Morning Herald interviewed Shadow assistant treasurer Dr Andrew Leigh, who stated that society missed the point, we shouldnt be looking down on them as a minority but accepting the Documentary as an invitation to have a look into their lives. “That show vividly portrayed the gap that has opened up in our community in recent decades, and showed just how far some have fallen behind as Australia’s richest have raced ahead,” said Dr Leigh.

Peta Ashley and his extended familiy, one of the families featured in Struggle Street Photo: SBS
Peta Ashley and his extended familiy, one of the families featured in Struggle Street Photo: SBS

“[And] Struggle Street isn’t just a place in Mount Druitt. There are people struggling down the street from us here in the centre of Canberra and right across Australia.”

With objectors launching a petition for Struggle struggle street to be cancelled, it was still broadcasted, leaving viewers engaged about a show which is now questionisng consent. mUmBRELLA also posted about the controversy of the shows content with Chief content officer Helen Kellie admitting that Struggle Street has been edited “out of respect” with content from original scenes that were going to be aired, pulled out.

Troubled teen Bailee and single mum Erin from Struggle Street. Photo: SBS
Troubled teen Bailee and single mum Erin from Struggle Street. Photo: SBS

‘Struggle street’ a publisised, unvarnished truth, that many viewers are uncomfortable with, generating questions of consent within media coverage pieces and residents of Mount Druitt feeling portrayed. The documentry seems to have brought awareness to a town that society ignores. Struggle street portrays its subjects as humans worth considering.

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