Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Gatekeepers of the Female Voice

It seems to me during this General Election 2015 that yes the political parties and also the media are now very much out of touch with the reality of the lives that ordinary people are pursuing.

With regards to Women's Issues there seems to me to be even more of a gulf.

Media Women control the "voice" of women on Radio and TV and in newspapers.
They are probably strong, strident and educated women. Well done to them etc. But they have also been successful as they have risen to the top if they are working in National TV or for a National newspaper.  Now, not everyone has their ambition or even wants to be that successful, but are they even able to represent the rest of us ? They may not have had to deal with failure - e.g. failure to pass an exam, failure to get that dream job you applied to, failure to be able to live in the town you grew up in or near your family.

And if working in media, then the nature of the job is such that they will probably have had to use nursery or childcare, if working 9-5 or maybe use a nanny if working unsociable hours. So already they have moved into quite an exclusive league.

Those of us who either stopped working or aimed for part time work or started a small business so we could work from home when our kids were young are just not in their league. And then there are the people who have failed to find employment ever - they struggle with young families. Can these media people really understand where these people are coming from ?  Now I am sure many do try, but my concern is that from their privileged position, they are able to push their own agendas. I mean who wouldn't be able to resist pushing your own ideas in the same situation ?  So we seem to have a very liberal left wing / "equality" (at paid "work" !!) agenda being pushed- its alien to me, not something I ever discussed during my years doing a science degree or working as a teacher or in a University Hospital department. And then afterwards mixing with mothers and some fathers at toddler groups / school gate etc.

So we have the media types, Womans Hour is an example, who I feel push their own agenda with the occasional token person with a differing point of view.

And now we have politicians. Our local politician proudly proclaims her grandmother is helping out with childcare while she is out at political meetings etc locally. But again if a young woman with a family has decided she can work with the long hours at Westminster then she must be using childcare or have a husband at home. But how well can they represent us ordinary women ?  And again these women tend to be confident, educated, strident, articulate people.

But in the whole debate now the one woman who is no longer approved of is a Mum who decides to take some time out and rear their own kids.  Now why is it that this is no longer approved of ? Surely if we had equality then this choice would be accepted and valued ? And subsidised / paid for ? Just as the role is subsidised or paid for if it is done by someone else ?

True equality is only going to be reached when Mums are accepted into our society.

And I know in a few cases a Dad will prefer to take on this role.

But the thing that I think would help everyone, working Mums and Dads included and even people without kids who may have even elderly relatives etc to care for is the following :

We need more options to work :
  • Part Time
  • Term Time
  • The Hours that a job requires
  • Flexibility
This will lead to more satisfied, content employees and will ultimately lead to less stress in the workplace and at home.

Many many jobs really do not need to be full time. Fine if that is what someone wants to do, but so many times there are busy weeks and quiet weeks. Why not trust your employees to register the hours they actually require. And many jobs could be 9.30 - 2.30 which would be ideal for school hours.

So we need to re-focus on getting more part time jobs and also stop the focus on young children staying at school 8 - 6 to accommodate the parents !!
I mean maybe if these Media Types and Politicians had hated school like the rest of us then they wouldn't be subjecting our young children to this !!

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