In support of International Women’s Day and thanks to i=Change, we’re increasing our charity donations from $1 to $3 from every Medley purchase over the next three days. i=Change is working to collectively raise $100,000, impacting 25,000 people's lives. Shop with us between the 8th -10th of March to help contribute to this goal.
Acting to consciously participate in breaking the bias toward women. Actively participating in conversations to bring to light biased situations. Advocating for women in every and any situation. Whether deliberate or unconscious, bias makes it difficult for women to move ahead. (1)
In the UN report - "Gender Social Norms" index analysed biases in areas such as politics and education in 75 countries. It discovered that 90% of men and women hold some sort of bias against females. Globally, close to 50% of men said they had more rights to a job than women. (2)
Action to support women experiencing bias and inequality is being called upon. We need to consciously be aware of this bias and start working towards putting actions into place to change it, it’s time to lean in. Cross your arms to show solidarity and strike the International Women’s Day 2022 pose. Get your faves together, grab your co-workers or ask someone to take your photo. Our team took a picture each to show our support for International Women’s Day #BreakTheBias.
The battle to secure gender equality in our world is one that has been fought for many years, by inspirational women throughout history. These women started this movement and the importance and necessity for equality is no less important today. We wanted to take an opportunity to highlight four women whose bravery and perseverance changed history forever.
“…No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving in”
Rosa Parks was an established organiser and leader in the Civil Rights Movement in Alabama. One of her most well-known acts against inequality was in 1955 when she refused to move from her seat on a bus. She chose a seat at the front of the bus instead of sitting at the back that was segregated to people of colour. An act of true bravery and strength. (3)
“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn't be that women are the exception.”
Ruth Bader Ginsburg was the second woman to serve on the supreme court.(4) She was a powerful, educated, passionate voice for equality. She was a driving force that led to many strides for women in the world of the law. Pushing for women to have a choice, the education they desired, independence and control over their own lives. (5)
“...I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.”
Frida Kahlo created artwork that encouraged women to express their pain and real emotions. She used her immense creative talent to encourage women to be themselves, challenging stereotypes through her art. (6)
"Don't think about making women fit the world—think about making the world fit women."
Journalist, author, documentary producer and powerful feminist, Gloria Steinem has lived a life dedicated to women’s rights. She is famously known for her integral role as an influential, unforgettable spokeswoman of the women’s rights movement in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. (7) Steinem pushes for the world to make changes, to give women choices and equality.
We take a moment to chat with the Head of Medley, Amber Hodgman:
As we take the time to shine the light on the women who paved the way for this future we’re living in, we speak to our leader Amber Hodgman to talk about her career experience in today’s world.
1. Have you experienced bias?
I have been fortunate enough to reside in a country with relatively progressive laws protecting fairness between women and men, however we can always do better. For many other countries and places that is not always the case. When I first came into my industry over a decade ago preferential treatment towards men, age or certain races was still an issue but I have seen the industry push towards change. The retail sector has many incredible women supporting its function but we need to continue to push for more women in leadership and not just support roles.
2. What does this year’s theme mean to you?
For me breaking the bias stands for liberation and freedom to affect change regardless of gender. As a leader of an all-female team, it highlights the importance of providing opportunities based on talent and merit. Creating an environment that supports individuality, diversity and community.
3. What ways do you think would help people to #BreakTheBias?
Holding the decision-makers accountable, both female and male. We need to actively and consciously channel the power and responsibility we have into providing career opportunities to all. Too often I see the easy route taken, the next person in line. We need to seek out those who we can learn from, who can teach us. Employing and giving women (all women) the chance to participate in their career of choice creates purpose. That purpose feeds into communities, families and countries. It creates independence. In a western country, we take these things for granted because we go to university, select a career we want and off we go, but for many women around the world that choice is never theirs.
4. What change would you like to see in the coming years?
Structural changes to our work schedules to allow women to cultivate their careers and invest in themselves. It’s still too rigid, I want to see fluidity and acceptance of work/life, especially during the early years of starting a family. Better representation of non-binary and LGBTQI+ leadership. It comes back to the best person for the task. Seems so simple and yet it remains such a challenged concept.
5. What ways do you contribute to breaking the bias? Whether that be opening the conversation, educating yourself further or expressing it different ways?
This is a great question and something I feel I can continue to work on. Education is always the best place to start. As I mentioned above, I live in a safe country and have privileges that other women don’t get so if I remained insular in my thoughts I would never expose myself to the world at large. I have seen the most success in breaking the bias by challenging what I see and proposing another way, an inclusive way. The retail industry has a responsibility to represent the diversity of people who are involved. From how models represent a brand right through to the treatment of its makers in the supply chain. It’s a global industry that extends over many cultures and countries, we need to represent them all.
6. What advice would you give to others to break the bias and empower women around them?
Speak up! When you have the feeling in your gut or heart that something doesn’t feel right, say something. Have follow through, mean what you say and take action accordingly. Be kind and conscious, better to educate yourself first and take your time.
What ways do you #BreakTheBias? For more information on this years International Women's Day theme please head to: https://www.internationalwomensday.com/theme