UN Expert Says The UK Has a Sexist ‘Boy’s Club Culture’

Rashida Manjoo says that the sexism in the UK is 'in-your-face'...


by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

A UN Special Rapporteur has said that the UK has a 'boys club' culture', and must do more to combat sexism.

Rashida Manjoo, who is studying the UK's approach to women and girls, said: 'Have I seen this level of sexist culture in other countries? It hasn't been so in-your-face in other countries.'


She added: 'I'm sure it exists but it wasn't so much and so pervasive. I'm not sure what gives rise to a more visible presence of sexist portrayals of women and girls in this country in particular.'

Criticising the media's treatment of women, she said it contains: 'negative and over-sexualised portrayals of women', and accused some websites and TV channels of dealing in the "marketisation of their bodies'.

The South African added: 'What is clear from these indications of portrayals of women and girls is that there is a boys' club sexist culture.'

It's not all grim, though. The part-time professor at the University of Cape Town, was here to get an insight and do research into issues such as domestic and sexual violence, sexual harassment, forced and early marriages and female genital mutilation. Ok, that sounds grim, but seriously, in her research she's found there have been positive moves to tackle these issues successfully.

Except the *The Metro *reports that she also said that 'violence against women remains a pervasive challenge throughout the United Kingdom', and pointed out that government cuts are getting in the way of solutions to this problem.

The Home Office have released a statement saying they've ringfenced nearly £40m for 'specialist support services and national helplines'. However, according to the BBC, Ms Manjoo said that it's wider cuts that lead to the poverty and unemployment that contribute to the causes of anti-woman violence.

Ms Manjoo's research extends beyond the UK - she's been to India, Azerbaijan, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Italy and Jordan - so it looks like she properly knows what she is talking about, despite what some critics are saying. She will present her findings to the UN Human Rights Council in June.

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

Picture: Getty

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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