The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, otherwise known as UNESCO, is an establishment that was founded in response to the spread of racist and anti-semetic messages due to World War II. UNESCO’s motto, “Building peace in the minds of men and women,” is upheld by their programs that improve educational, scientific, and cultural knowledge and opportunities for underserved populations. Actively aiding people in South America, Africa, Europe, Asia, and a number of other regions, UNESCO is giving individuals the opportunity to live healthy, independent, and empowered lives.
In their efforts to spread peace throughout the globe, this organization has specific intentions of encouraging gender equality in sports and sports media. They are aware of the small number of women that diversify sports broadcasting, as well as the slim percentage of television coverage that female athletes receive. Even when women are covered by the media, they are often referenced because of appearance, age, family, and other factors that are irrelevant to their athletic prowess, while men are often depicted as powerful and valued athletes.
UNESCO identifies this representational issue as one of great importance as they build their organization around peace and equality. As a result, they offer a number of ways for people and companies to improve female representation in sports and sports media. Check out some of their suggestions below!
“Install Her Headline”
Implement this UNESCO database that allows their servers to scan sports articles, seek out gender-biased words and phrases, and explain why this may not be the most effective use of language.
“Host Special ‘Gender and Sports’ Program”
Find local sports stars who are willing to sit down with younger generations and have a conversation surrounding the portrayal of men and women in sports and sports media.
“Hand the Mic to Women”
Encourage business leaders to promote women sports broadcasters and companies to reconsider whether their internal policies are equitable.
“Bring Women’s Sports to the Fore”
Prioritize coverage of women’s athletics in your region to balance the lack of global recognition.
“Gauge Gender-Sensitivity in your Operations and Content”
Utilize UNESCO’s Gender-Sensitive Indicators to balance any media content and remove microaggressions.
As individuals, business owners, parents, leaders in our communities, etc., we are all responsible for bringing equality to men’s and women’s sports. These simple tasks suggested by UNESCO are great ways to actively engage in lifting up the voices and accomplishments of women in the world of athletics.