Gender equality speaker returns to Cayman

Gender equality advocate Jackson Katz will return to Grand Cayman in early March to continue talks on gender violence prevention, as part of Honouring Women Month.

Mr. Katz will hold a series of workshops on how professionals in leadership roles can become influencers in improving gender equality and prevent sexual harassment in the workplace and elsewhere.

The Boston-area-based campaigner is co-facilitating four Gender Violence Prevention Leadership sessions with La Shonda Coleman, associate dean of student affairs at Pepperdine University.

The interactive, three-hour workshops will include breakout sessions, role play and other exercises. The workshops will be held at the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort on Thursday, March 1, and Friday, March 2.

The free sessions, in honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, are for civil servant leaders, human resources professionals, social welfare workers and sports coaches, among others, who are interested in becoming proactive rather than being passive bystanders when gender violence and harassment is raised, according to a press release.

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In stating that most cases of gender violence are committed by men, Mr. Katz advises that gender inequality can no longer be brushed off as a “women’s issue.”

“Men also need to step up, as influencers, when it comes to addressing sexual harassment,” he said in the press release. “No one is suggesting that you physically take on an abuser. But it’s no longer enough to say I’m a good person, this has nothing to do with me. Men and women have to meet such behaviors head on and stop enabling by their silence.”

He said the training gives men and women the latest tools to comfortably but uncompromisingly counter sexism among friends, teammates, colleagues and co-workers, as well as to help them develop tools to provide stronger leadership on these critical issues.

Mr. Katz is currently working on an Oscar awards campaign, called #AskHerMore, with the San Francisco-based Representation Project.

March’s Honouring Women Month coincides with a greater awareness of gender harassment issues globally. The debate, fueled by celebrity pronouncements, is gaining momentum with calls for substantive action through the #MeToo, #AskMoreofHim and #AskHerMore campaigns.

#AskMoreofHim is calling on television journalists and interviewers covering the Oscars on March 4 to ask men in Hollywood what they plan to do to support women in the #MeToo movement, while urging them to use their platform to address men about the need for them to speak out about sexist abuse.

To register for the 9 a.m. to noon, or the 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. sessions, call the Family Resource Centre at 949-0006.

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  1. Sadly the issue of sexual harassment, sometimes lies in the hands of women. For many years Harvey Weinstein was a well known despot, as well as other unfavorable descriptions. Hollywood is a small place. Anyone in or connected to the entertainment industry knew the ugly side to this man. YET, the women flocked. Yet, the women swallowed their pride, if they had any, and for the sake of their careers let desperation dictate what would become an ugly blame game, making men the culprits of all that is seedy, unseemly, and ugly. Well, my friends, women like that certifiable Rose McGowan, and all the other poor women on the “get Harvey” bandwagon, need to look deep into themselves. Perhaps culpability should be shared with everyone. Their almighty careers has taken center stage to dignity, morals and decency.

  2. READ my lips. I said blame SOMETIMES lies with the women. If a woman goes to a hotel room with a man, they are assuredly not going to discuss the stock market. This is the case with Mr. Weinstein, and a woman. PLEEAASE. Women get smart, and remember nothing is worth sacrificing your self respect for.