06 Mar International Women’s Day 2020: We are Generation Equality
As people, women, men, workers, researchers, and activists engaged in the Grassroots Radio project, we join the International Women’s Day 2020, which UN Women has dedicated to the theme of Gender Equality. The Generation Equality campaign is bringing together people of every gender, age, ethnicity, race, religion and country, to drive actions that will create the gender-equal world we all deserve. In joining this campaign as well as other forms of demonstration, the Grassroots Radio project is committed to mobilizing to end gender-based violence; we are calling for economic justice and rights for all; bodily autonomy, sexual and reproductive health and rights; and feminist action for climate justice. We want technology and innovation for gender equality; and feminist leadership.
Grassroots Radio is piloting actions for community information platforms and media pluralism, working to lower the barriers to start and sustain a community radio station, create regional and European-wide networks of stations that can pool community-level resources, co-innovate collaborative media services, increase the permeability and impact of those stations through a combination of existing digital and nondigital technologies.
In undertaking all these activities, the Grassroots Radio project is devoted not only to ensure gender equality in terms of fair distribution of men and women across roles and responsibilities, but also to employ a gender perspective to shape research practices in order to improve the social relevance and the scientific quality of the outputs we are developing.
We recognize that the role of (community) media in promoting gender equality is fundamental. Community radio has the responsibility to promote the active involvement of women and LGBTQ+ people in order to achieve both a fair and non-stereotyped representation and decision-making positions in all forms of media. Community radio should be at the forefront of achieving these objectives, in line with the gender equality strategy outlined by the European Commission.
It is crucial that the struggle to achieve gender equality in the community radio sector, and in the media sector more in general, considers the following aspects as top priorities: women’s access to the airwaves, women’s representation on air, the special needs of minority women, women’s representation at all levels of station management, use of appropriate technology, funding and capacity building for women’s radio.
“The benefits of gender equality are not just for women and girls, but for everyone whose lives will be changed by a fairer world that leaves no one behind”, says Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women. In this respect, community media are key actors for achieving gender equality.