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Falconer calls on media to tackle gender exploitation

Published:Friday | January 29, 2016 | 12:00 AM

Minister with responsibility for Information Senator Sandrea Falconer says the way women are being portrayed in traditional media needs to be addressed.

"The media cannot be neutral about the exploitation of our women and girls. They have many tools, programmes at their disposal, that they can use to present a more positive image of our women," she said.

The minister was addressing the launch of the World Bank's Next GENDERation media toolkit to tackle gender-based violence on Thursday at the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel in New Kingston.

Reality television

She expressed particular concern about the portrayal of women in reality television shows, noting that these unfavourable depictions are beginning to surface in Jamaica.

"If our media practitioners decide that they are going to help to change the cultural norms in Jamaica, we will see a different media landscape. We will see them playing different music and having different programmes," she said.

The Next GENDERation media toolkit initiative aims to contribute to reducing violence in Jamaica by promoting positive dialogue around gender roles and raising awareness of the link between gender stereotypes and violence among youth.

It includes a range of educational videos, animations, and material to sensitise young people about issues, including bullying and gang and sexual violence. The toolkit will also be distributed in schools to teachers, counsellors, and social workers.