As a new report makes clear, urgent action is required to eradicate sexism in the industryby Rory Palmer / April 23, 2018 / Leave a comment
The media establishment must find the resolve to confront some challenging home truths in relation to the experiences of women working in the sector.
Two important and inter-connected sets of issues were considered in a report voted on in the European Parliament last week: the experience of women working in the media profession and the ongoing challenge to tackle abuse, harassment and hostility towards journalists.
Through my work on the European Parliament’s Employment and Social Affairs Committee on this report, I met with organisations representing media professionals who provided me with key insights into the day-to-day experience of women journalists. Large parts of the media remain male-dominated and recruitment and career progression can be deeply imbalanced. We have seen recently unacceptable revelations about the pay differentials of high profile men and women at the BBC; scandalous practice made known because of courageous women speaking out.
It seems employment culture and practice across the media industry has inbuilt bias against women. For example, the widespread use of short-term, temporary contracts with little or zero provision for parental leave is a factor which clearly disadvantages women. Digitalisation is changing the media industry landscape and in places creating a downward pressure on contract arrangements, pay and conditions, leading to more and more journalists and media professionals finding themselves in precarious…