What is sexism?
Sexism is prejudice, stereotyping or discrimination, usually against women on the basis of their gender. It can come in many forms such as the gender pay gap, sexual harassment or misogyny. Sexism was a term that emerged during second wave feminism in the 1960’s to 1980’s.
Sexism can also include the belief that one gender is more superior or valuable than another. This limits what men and women can or should do. The concept of sexism was originally aimed at raising awareness of the oppression of women and girls but has since been expanded to include the oppression of any gender including intersex and transgender people.
What are examples of everyday sexism at work?
- Insults that are disguised as jokes
- Devaluing women’s voice or opinions
- Excluding women or other genders from informal networks
- Gendered job roles and language used in job descriptions
- Sexual harassment
- Gender Pay Gap
How can you avoid sexism?
To avoid sexism, it’s important to be conscious of how it can manifest and take action to prevent it.
- Educate yourself- learn about the different forms of sexism, like the ones mentioned above.
- Speak up- if you hear a colleague say or do something sexist, consider speaking to them about it.
- Promote gender equality- support policies and initiatives that promote gender inclusion and equal opportunities.
- Challenge stereotypes- try to avoid assumptions about different gender identities and encourage others to do the same.
- Foster diversity at work- promote inclusion of all diverse gender backgrounds in the workplace. Support employee resource groups and examine how inclusive your hiring practices are.
- Lead by example- treat all people with respect to create a culture of inclusion.
Sexism is prejudice, stereotyping or discrimination, usually against women on the basis of their gender. It can come in many forms such as the gender pay gap, sexual harassment or misogyny. Sexism was a term that emerged during second wave feminism in the 1960’s to 1980’s. It comes in many forms from jokes to outright exclusion from opportunities.
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