It started with the ‘Women’s March’, which galvanised more than five million women across the globe. The peaceful rallies celebrated and brought to the fore, issues ranging from healthcare reform to LGBT rights, and reproductive rights to Trump.
Then came the Weinstein scandal. On social media, #MeToo became a united voice for women and men to come together and denounce sexism, inequality and harassment in all forms.
It was a poignant moment when Time magazine honoured these ‘Silence Breakers’ as their ‘person of the year’. The group of brave men and women who came forward to share their stories, creating a global movement.
It is no wonder then, that 2018 has been named ‘The Year of the Woman’.
So why now? According to CNN, women are more “engaged, energized and resolute than ever”. The appetite for reform, for discussion and for change has never been more evident than today.
In America, more women are entering politics than ever before1, while here in the U.K., companies and individuals are becoming accountable for their actions. Already this year Easyjet, Virgin Money and Ladbrokes were called out for discrepancies in gender pay2, helping to bring about equality and diversity in the workplace.
And solidarity was never seen more poignantly than just days ago at the Golden Globe Awards, where Hollywood actresses made a stance against the imbalance of power, by wearing black gowns on the red carpet. A taste of what’s to come for the year ahead…
But much yet needs to be done.
In the U.K. we still have one of the worst records for gender equality in terms of pay3, and the number of young women being ‘shut out’ of the job market owing to lack of childcare support continues to rise4.
This means that it’s more important than ever to make our voices heard.
We are responsible for change as individuals. Whether it’s joining a movement, creating a movement or addressing issues on a personal level.
In the workplace, it’s time to speak up. If you feel that your company could be doing more, be it through offering more part-time roles or returnships, by promoting more women into senior positions, or by improving maternity leave policy – we have the responsibility to bring this to the attention of our peers and senior management.
On a larger scale we can stand together, side-by-side. Whether it’s at women’s marches, by joining unions, or showing our support to other voices on social media including; @SistersUncut, @UKBLM, @NobelWomen, @WomensMarch @BBCWomansHour and @Woman_Kind.
Progress on the Women’s March in London can be followed at https://www.womensmarchlondon.com and @womensmarchlon. There’s other fringe movements and occasions worth following too, including the #FlexAppeal campaign and International Women’s Day (March 8).
You can also follow us @HireMyMa for all the latest industry news and job opportunities for working Mothers.
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