Friday 12 April 2024
 9.7°C   SW Strong Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Letters / A safer future

Following on from my letter last week Time to heed their call; Shetland News, 7 October 2021) I have written this week directly to SIC councillors, our local MSP and MP about how gender stereotypes contribute to violence against women, as well as harming girls, boys and men, and also regarding the council’s unconditional support for Lerwick’s Up Helly Aa and Shetland’s Junior Up Hella Aa.

They ought now know Unlimited Potential, the final report of the Commission on Gender Stereotypes in Early Childhood.

It shows the harms that stereotypes do:

  • Gender stereotypes result in girls, by the age of six, avoiding subjects they view as requiring them to be “really, really smart”, which reads across to lower take-up of STEM subjects in later life;
  • Gender stereotyped expectations result in boys developing poorer reading skills;
  • Children who hold more gender stereotyped views, and whose friends emphasize stereotypes, have poorer wellbeing;
  • 36 per cent of seven to ten year-old girls say they are made to feel their looks are their most important attribute, contributing to dissatisfaction with their bodies which impacts on 4 eating disorders and suicide attempts, just as expectations around the male breadwinner and ‘stoic’ men contribute to higher male suicide rates;
  • There is significant research that finds that challenging gender-stereotyped behaviour in early childhood can reduce violence against women and girls.

The full report is available here.

In the light of this information let us hope that those blocking the long called for minimal changes can be encouraged to reconsider their position.

Shetland Island’s Council should only wish to support a more inclusive, less harmful festival into the future.

Peter Hamilton

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.