US Consul General Beth A Payne: media can play a pivotal role in promoting gender equality

Kolkata, Sept 24 (Calcutta Tube/IBNS): United States Consul General in Kolkata Beth A Payne on Friday said the media can play a pivotal role in promoting gender equality and bringing about women’s empowerment.

“I believe that the media can be an important player in promoting women empowerment and gender equality throughout the world,” Beth A Payne said here addressing students in the University of Calcutta’s Department of Journalism, on the role of media in promoting gender equality.

“Countries will never realise their full potential if half of their population is not given the opportunity for education, health care, access to employment and credit. Therefore, empowering women is an essential ingredient for both the United States and India’s economic growth,”  she said.

“When women earn an income they develop the self-confidence they need to break down barriers.  Stories that show women in non-traditional professions provide both a role model for other women but also encourage others to provide the same opportunities to their women employees.” she said.

He also emphasised on the need to break down stereotypes in reporting and encourage women to cover hard news along with the male counterpart and vice versa.

“Arundhati Roy spent days in the jungle reporting on the Maoists and Barkha Dutt of NDTV was the first woman to report from the war zone during the Kargil conflict in 1999.  Why shouldn’t a man report on fashion or parenting?” he questioned while sharing his views on gender stereotypying in the media.

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