From a creative or marketing point of view, there’s nothing outstanding about this video by Girlguiding UK. It’s a typical compilation of “streeters,” with diverse women speaking out about sexism and harassment:
What is interesting is how activist the Guides have become. This is not a simple call to the public to help fight inequality; this is an organized demand to British MPs.
Their online petition to Members of Parliament makes the following demands:
1. Listen to girls and young women, take them seriously and make sure their voices count
2. Demand that schools take a zero-tolerance approach to sexual bullying and harassment
3. Call on all schools to teach body confidence and gender equality
4. Make girls’ rights a priority in the UK’s approach to international development
5. Stop children’s exposure to harmful sexualised content in mainstream media
6. Empower girls and young women to speak out and be heard on the impact of media sexism and stereotyping
7. Modernise Sex and Relationships Education so all young people can make informed decisions and stay safe
8. Guarantee that women will be equally represented in Parliament
These are big demands (#5 worries me from a censorship point-of-view, and applying #8 could have some unintended consequences) but I can’t think of another time that the 104-year-old organization, or any of its international versions, has directly addressed politicians with such a powerful agenda.
The YouTube channel summarizes the campaign:
What’s it like being a girl today? We’re asking the people in power to listen to girls and find out.
Girlguiding asked thousands of girls and young women, and they told us their experiences of being yelled at in the street, overwhelming pressure to look like the images they see in the media, and feeling like their voices weren’t being heard. So in the lead-up to the General Election, we’re launching the Girls Matter campaign – eight asks from girls to the people in charge.
As the leading charity for girls and young women in the UK, Girlguiding can help these girls – and millions like them – to be heard by those in power. We’re amplifying their calls for better education, fairer representation in the media, and more female role models in politics.
You can see more of the campaign at their new site. (Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to give a running tally of how many citizens have signed, or which politicians have pledged).
We’ll be watching this one.