IFJ Gender Council elects new board and set priorities for gender equality

The IFJ Gender Council today elected a new board including Co-Chairs, Mindy Ran (NUJ, UK and Ireland) and Mounia Belafia (SNPM, Morocco), and the Vice-Chair Fatimah Abdulkareem (NUJ, Nigeria). The Council also elected members of its board representing all IFJ regions around the world. 

Ran, who was re-elected as the Chair of the Council, said:  "This is a truly historical moment for women. Years ago, the Council started from a small number of women journalists in the region. Today, we have over 30 dedicated members from around the world who are committed in improving gender equality in trade unions and the media." 

Regional coordinators who attended the meeting highlighted the challenges facing women journalists in their regions, including the impact of the economic crisis, women precariousness in the profession and their limited access to leading roles in unions and the media.  

Abdulkareem said: "The main challenge facing women journalists in the region is to break the traditional stereotypes. It is difficult for women to reach to the top of a media organisation but this situation is slowly improving."  

The Council identified a series of projects to be developed on gender equality, including a train-the-trainer programme for women activists, and a global survey on equal pay. 

Belafia said: "We have made a big step in promoting gender equality in unions and the media. The meeting laid down the foundation and working plans for the future work of the Council." 

As a result of the meeting, an action plan will be developed in the coming months.  

Commenting during the meeting NUJ (UK & Ireland) General Secretary, Michelle Stanistreet, said she was very proud that the Council had held its first democratic elections, while Seamus Dooley,  the Irish General Secretary of NUJ said this was a great kick-off to what has promised to be an exciting congress. 

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The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries