The state government will dedicate an additional $1 million to Women’s Health Victoria’s shEqual campaign to address sexism, female objectification and gender inequality in advertising.
Women’s Minister Natalie Hutchins announced the funding on Friday 16 September which will contribute to the national framework of shEqual ‘Seeing is Believing’ which engages with the Australian Association of National Advertisers to strengthen its code of Ethics, providing gender equality training and a guide to help industry professionals identify and challenge harmful stereotypes in advertising.
“Advertising is highly visible in our community – and it’s important that it reflects the type of society we want to build, so we’re very proud to support this leading work at a national level to bring about lasting change in gender equality,” she said. .
A Women’s Health Victoria survey of around 600 advertising industry professionals found that more than 30% of industry staff are reluctant to speak out against sexist or stereotypical content or depictions of women in advertising for fear of negative consequences.
Women’s Health Victoria chief executive Dianne Hill said the shEqual campaign is leading to more diverse and positive portrayals of women and girls in advertisements across the state.
“We know we need to create culture change, and we’re excited to continue that work with this investment, to embed lasting change across the industry,” she said.