Tag Archives: equality

Meet the Meat: M&C Saatchi

The Task Force on Human Trafficking and Prostitution (TFHT) teamed up with M&C Saatchi (Tel Aviv) to campaign for the legislation to prohibit prostitution, aiming to put an end to the prostitution industry in Israel. Mortality rates among Israeli female prostitutes are 40 times higher than the rest of the population, so M&C aimed to reduce the demand for prostitution by engaging with consumers who finance the industry.
The message for this campaign is that women are not a product for consumption, so they created a pop-up ‘food’ truck parked opposite the Israeli Parliament selling “women’s meat” sandwiches called ‘Breast Amal’ and ‘Ribs of Yael’, packaged into brown paper bags with real life stories of prostitutes:

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The experiential ‘Meet the Meat’ creative also features a truck with an illustration of a woman’s body divided into ‘cuts’, just like a cow. The vivid and disturbing creative reflects the dark facts – according to a survey by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Social Services, 12,500 women, men and teenagers are employed in prostitution in Israel.

Tzur Golan, ECD and Partner at M&C Saatchi, Tel Aviv said:

We can’t stand by and let this continue. It’s important to highlight the fact that every day vulnerable men, women and teenagers are employed in prostitution – and it’s getting worse. The best way to stop the wheels of this industry is to harm demand – if there’s no demand there won’t be supply. We wanted to create meaningful work and will continue to support TFHT as they continue to take a stand against the prostitution industry.

This is an incredible example of using advertising for social change – not just creating awareness in the most basic marketing form, but by using an in-your-face, bold and gross tactic is a sure way to get people talking. Hopefully it will get the government talking too.

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International Women’s Day: Take Your Pussy Anywhere You Want

Ad agency Invisible Man created this short video for International Women’s Day, specifically for the strike A Day Without a Woman. Arranged by those who organised the march for the Women’s March on Washington, D.C., the strike is in support of the human rights of women and all gender-oppressed people, through a one-day strike of economic equity.
The short ad states “Take your pussy anywhere you want. Just don’t take it to work” – due to the pay gap between men and women, human rights activists demonstrated March 8th as a day where women should strike from working if they aren’t going to be paid the same as their male colleagues.

This message is brought to you by a group of creative people who feel strongly that women’s rights are human rights. We believe in using our powers for good and support the efforts of every group trying to make the world a safer and more equitable place for women and girls.

P.S. We also think it’s high time women reclaim the power of a certain word for themselves.

I can’t help but see a nod towards Trump’s “grab her by the pussy” remarks, which works so well as double entendre for someone being paid less just because of what’s in between their legs.

 

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Exterion & TFL: London is Open

Earlier on in the year the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, asked creatives to submit their ideas for the #LondonIsOpen campaign, which was commissioned by Art on the Underground to demonstrate that London is still open to people of all backgrounds despite the awful aftermath of the EU referendum.

The campaign ran across all 270 London Tube stations, including work from Gillian Wearing, Tania Bruguera and Mark Titchner, amongst many others. The posters appeared as both print and digital, with a running theme of inclusivity and diversity.

Sadiq Khan said:

This campaign is about what kind of city we want to live in – and I’m proud to be working with the mayor to get across the message that our capital is a place where everyone is welcome.

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Now, Canary Wharf station has been given the largest ever Tube advertising screens (7.2m x 4m each). The artwork called “No them only us” was created by Mark Titchner for the #LondonIsOpen campaign, in collaboration with the station’s architects Foster & Partners, which greets tube users in the main ticket hall.

Whilst this campaign cost £1.1bn (that is ridiculous!) the message is really important at a time when xenophobic and racist attacks are on a rise after the EU referendum debate. I’m not sure how long the ads are running for, but I hope they stay up for a long time.

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Brexit and the consequences Human Rights face

When Brexit was first announced this year, my initial concerns consisted of what will happen regarding EU laws with human rights and animal rights. I’ve already written a blog post on animal rights – mainly the recent EU animal testing policies, so it’s time for human rights to take to the stage.

Current EU law protects rights affecting millions of people in the UK, for example:

  • employment rights
  • economic and social rights
  • equality and anti-discrimination protection in the UK (from European Court of Justice)
  • protection of gender, disability, age, religion, nationality, sexual orientation

Brexit could have a huge impact on these human rights protections, and would be the first time that a significant legal protection of rights was removed from UK citizens. What concerns me most is that there is a risk that the UK government could weaken the anti-discrimination and employment rights protection in UK law. These laws were born from the EU legislation (the rights set out in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights), and although many EU laws would remain, if the UK segregates itself completely from the EU (and consequently from jurisdiction of the EU Court of Justice) the government would be able to adopt laws that weaken those human rights protections.

Scary, right? I’m British, but was born in Belgium (and moved back to London at 8 months old), so if I had stayed and obtained a Belgian passport, but moved back to London in my teens, for example, I could be in fear of my employment and human rights… Even though my family are of British heritage. This poses a very scary situation for those who have moved to the UK without British heritage, which although I can mildly relate to, cannot ever totally contemplate.

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Of course, when it came to vote, I voted remain! I knew this would happen – I knew the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights (which is so fantastic and fundamental for our nation) would come under strain if we left. Another scenario I could have predicted with a crystal ball was this rise in xenophobia – however, I had no idea it would be this bad. The increase in hate crimes since Brexit is absolutely terrifying! There was a 60% increase in hate crimes after the referendum compared to the year before (from the National Council of Police Chiefs), including reports of assaults and arson attacks towards EU citizens.

Since “What is Brexit” and “What is Britain” were popular Google searches during the referendum, it doesn’t surprise me that people are interpreting Theresa May’s words as an excuse to attack EU citizens, mainly those of non-British heritage. Even the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (UN CERD) recommended that politicians choose their language and policy proposals carefully when it comes to political speeches, suggesting that

…public officials not only refrain from such [hate] speech but also formally reject hate speech and condemn the hateful ideas expressed so as to promote a culture of tolerance and respect.

When I heard that the government wants to require schools to record the country of birth and nationality of children, I thought this was a joke – a parody of racists – it wasn’t. It was also suggested that employers list their foreign workers and restricted entry to foreign students… these policy statements are very risky as they are conveying a message that the referendum result was a vote to rid the country of “foreigners”. I do believe that’s why the majority of Brexiters voted leave. And that’s scary because essentially, and genetically, I’m pretty sure none of us are actually British through-and-through…

The government now must make it clear what will affect EU citizens and their families as leaving the Council of Europe would significantly weaken human rights protection in the UK. It could weaken the court system in ways that would harm human rights protection across the Council of Europe region. That is scary. Something that makes me very proud to be British (and that never happens – for obvious reasons regarding association of Brexiters) is the amount of asylum seekers who start new lives here, such as members of the LGBT community who fear violence and even death in their country due to laws and a lack of human rights. Not just that, but most people I know have parents who fled their country to start a better life in the UK and have created a happy, successful, thriving life and home here. I don’t think that makes anyone less “British” – anyway, who are these racists and bigots to define “Britishness”?! We should all be forced to have DNA tests on “Who Do You Think You Are?” to shut everyone up (hey, I have French heritage!)

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Advertising and the rise of Trans* awareness

Whilst it’s perhaps not ideal as a Londoner to be writing about gender identity statistics in the US, it is still important note that the number of trans-identifying adults in the United States has doubled in the last decade (now 1.4 million adults). It’s a shame that publicised trans* awareness doesn’t seem to have the same impact in the UK… no major Government or administrative surveys have collected data by including a question where trans people can choose to identify themselves. Publicly collected data on trans people is virtually non-existent! Understandably though, there is a larger base of A-list celebrities in the USA, including trans* celebs like Caitlyn Jenner (below) and Laverne Cox (Orange is the New Black).

So, for now, the focus of this blog post will be about the impact of trans* awareness through advertising and marketing in the USA…

In August, Nike aired an ad for the Olympics featuring triathlete Chris Mosier (the first transgender athlete to make a U.S. men’s national team) which had millions of people from the entertainment, creative and advertising industries taking note. Since then, brands like H&M (featuring Caitlyn Jenner), YouTube and Bud Light, have either featured trans* stories/trans*-inclusive messaging in recent campaigns.

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Days after Nike’s 30-second spot, Clairol (Procter & Gamble) announced that trans* model Tracey Norman (who had worked for them previously in the 70s), would become the face of the Nice ‘n Easy ads once more. Grey (New York) were behind Clairol’s ad, and Beth Avellini (global group CD) states that “Advertising reflects society as a whole, and there’s been a slow acceptance that’s been happening in society.” I couldn’t agree more! However, there’s always a fear that marketers and creatives will use “the token trans* person” for buying power (which has also been expressed in the LGBT community as a whole), and the rise of trans*-inclusive publicity has brought into question whether these campaigns are for social benefit or brand benefit.

I have to say, the ads mentioned above do have a true sense of authenticity and passion. However, as a cis-gender woman I struggle to allow myself to actually have a strong opinion on this topic because it would never and could never affect me directly. It’s difficult to have 100% belief of genuine intentions when it comes to ads being created by hetero-normative marketers in a hetero-normative society. I have to agree with Chris Edwards (copywriter and author of the memoir, ‘Balls: It Takes Some to Get Some’) who states that “terminology is evolving… it is important for advertisers to do their research and work with advisors to make sure copy and tone resonate with the intended audience.”

 

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BBC Neurodiversity: magneticNorth

MagneticNorth has created an identity for a new BBC project to help people with neurological conditions (such as Tourette’s, dyslexia and autism) in the workplace.

The logo and the brand’s font is simple and clean, reflecting research that claims that people on the autistic spectrum can find complex patterns unpleasant and distracting. Likewise, the colour palette for the brand was intended to feel calming and accessible for all, yet bold enough to stand out amongst other campaigns.” (src: magneticNorth).

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CAPE, an acronym from “creating a positive environment” was developed by the BBC. Only 15% of working age people with neurodiverse conditions are in employment, and this longterm project aims to promote the notion that they “have unique talents and skills that are not currently being harnessed affectively in the workplace.”

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The branding is currently featured on print posters, digital screens, leaflets and event branding.

As someone with a huge interest in social design, projects like CAPE reinforce why I love my industry. Designers (and general creatives) have the ability, and opportunity, to communicate and educate using their talent, for the greater good. What an incredibly special skill to have!

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Milan Vayntrub: A Creative Force for Good

What a fantastic career! Below are my favorite parts of the article…

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Do you think activism and creativity are becoming more intertwined? Is there more of a relationship between things that people view as entertainment and as activism?
People are really waking up to a global responsibility, especially our generation, and I think the internet has a big part in it. I think it’s maybe just a time of so much strife in the world that it’s hard to ignore. Then there are brilliant comedians that make it something digestible but also infuriating. So yeah, I think entertainment and activism go very much hand in hand. Though I don’t want to say it’s an entertainer’s responsibility to also be an activist. I don’t even really think of myself as an activist. I just feel very passionate about these people who are going through a hard time.

And part of getting ahead in the entertainment world is now about your social currency, too.
I think about that a lot. When I started to get a backlash for my opinions, I looked at what other women and men in the industry that I respect are doing. Some of them are big philanthropists and quiet on social media [about it]. Their social media is about their product, and their product is them, and so they post their selfies and their behind-the-scenes pics and people like it and love it and they build their audience and they book their work and then they donate quietly, and that is really cool. Then there are other people I respect like Macklemore, who uses his voice constantly to try to make change in the world, and that’s really brave and scary, and I respect that, too. I don’t know which one I should be doing because it fucks me up to have to have those conversations. And I do, I engage with those people on Twitter, and I don’t know if that’s the right thing to do.

Also, it’s so cocky of me to think that I could change anyone’s mind, but I can’t do nothing. How am I not supposed to talk to these 100,000 people about something that’s tearing me up today? How am I supposed to act like it’s not happening? How am I supposed to post my happy selfie today when I’m actually really distraught about the murder that’s happening in the world? Maybe I should. Maybe this will be the downfall of my career if people stop following me and studios don’t want to be involved with someone this controversial—not that I am controversial in any way—I don’t know what is the right move or the more advisable career move, but life is long and complicated and you’ve got to do what you feel is right.

[quotes and image from adweek]

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Adidas Original Pride Pack

It’s June so that means only one thing – Pride month!

Whilst I eagerly await the main events in London, I also look forward to discovering what pro-LGBT brands do for Pride.

This year, Adidas Originals have partnered up with Stonewall UK to create a Pride Pack which consists of 9 rainbow splattered products.

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Adidas wrote on its Instagram that the proceeds will go toward…

“creating a world where every single person can be accepted without exception”.

 

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Liberty Human Rights | Show Me Yours…

Ad agency Don’t Panic stages a scenario in an amusing video for Liberty Human Rights where a complete stranger who walks up to pedestrians on the street, asking to access to all the personal data on their phones.

The PSA is designed to raise awareness of the sweeping nature of Britain’s Investigatory Powers Bill. Derisively known as the Snoopers’ Charter, the controversial legislation would allow the government to intercept all manner of digital communications and information.

I love this kind of campaign – I’ve always had an interest in how people react differently when faced with circumstances/problems in real life. Sort of like face-to-face pranking to make people question themselves/their actions.

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EU: Yes or No? What has the ECHR ever done for us?

After Theresa May says Britain should leave the European convention on human rights, Patrick Stewart, Adrian Scarborough and Sarah Solemani expose the problems in the Conservative plan for a UK bill of rights. Hilarious satire video:

May said the influence of the European Court of Human Rights made Britain “less secure” as she described how it had delayed the deportation of hate preachers and terror suspects, as well as denying MPs the power to ban prisoners from having the vote. May has now been ridiculed after being told Britain can’t quit the ECHR as long as it remains a member of the EU. The EU is bound by the ECHR.

The shadow justice secretary, Charles Falconer, accused May of “sacrificing Britain’s 68-year-old commitment to human rights for her own miserable Tory leadership ambitions”.

So, as someone who is wanting to take part in this vote, whilst being a human rights activist, the safety if ECHR is concerning. Shouldn’t the UK lead not retreat on human rights?

Theresa May has claimed “we can protect human rights ourselves”, which is a terrifying statement, particularly in the wake of the US presidential election, where Human Rights groups are looking for allies and support from other countries. How can we criticise Donald Trump’s views on human rights and equality if we are unable to set an example ourselves? How will this impact those wanting to have a better life in the UK after living in abhorrent, dangerous conditions?

I’m spending some time researching and thinking about which way my vote should go. I will also be considering the impact of Animal Rights laws (I’ll probably do a post on that too), as the recent changes in laws have had a hugely positive impact on EU animal cruelty regarding the barbaric testing of products etc. What will happen with China and their animal testing policy? Will we still obtain the same Animal Rights laws if we leave the EU?…

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