Broadcast journalist and senatorial candidate Jiggy Manicad has called for improvements in gender equality in media amid the celebration of National Women's Month.
Manicad, who worked in a big television network prior to his Senate bid, noted that there is a need for more women decision-makers in the local media.
“In my more than 20 years as reporter, I'm proud to say that there are more women nowadays in media who are writing the news, reporting the news, and managing shows and newsrooms, but we could do more,” Manicad said at the sidelines of his recent sortie in Camarines Sur.
“For women to have an impact on media, they have to hold more key positions in the industry as directors, executives, and owners,” he added.
According to the veteran journalist, this would pave the way to promote “diversity and plurality” in the stories being reported, especially with regards to the portrayal of women in the media.
The multi-awarded journalist, who is vying for a Senate seat for the first time this upcoming elections, urged his former colleagues to be more gender-sensitive and avoid stereotyping women as merely those tasked in the care of children or the upkeep of the household.
“Siyempre trabaho ng
media na ipahayag ang kuwento ng mga nanay na nasa tahanan lang kasi hinahangaan natin sila, pero trabaho rin nating ikuwento 'yung mga babaeng nagtatrabaho, nagsasapalaran sa ibang bansa, at namumuno sa kanilang mga kumpanya o industriya
,” Manicad said.
“We have so much power to influence the minds of Filipinos—especially the young. This is why we have to inject an appreciation of diversity in our news and the perspectives we share,” he added.
He also called out on cases of “lipstick journalism” where women in the news are only featured in relation to topics related to beauty, fashion, and lifestyle.
“Mag-ingat na rin po tayo sa paggamit ng mga
gender-sensitive words tulad ng
chairman o chairwoman, kaya nga may mga
alternative tulad ng
neutral tayo sa ganoong lagay
," Manicad pointed out.