Politics

Nordic ministers address #metoo in the cultural sector

“The #MeToo movement has turned the Nordic Region on its head, uncovering systematic failures, a lack of leadership, and ignorance in many parts of our society in a somewhat dramatic fashion”, state the Nordic ministers for culture – including Faroese minister of culture, Ms. Rigmor Dam.

Since the autumn of 2017, the #metoo movement has had a huge impact around the globe. During their meeting in Malmö on 9 May, the Nordic ministers for culture issued a joint statement regarding their continued efforts to tackle sexual harassment and promote safe workplaces in the Nordic cultural sector.

The ministers’ statement opens with a clear acknowledgement of the several different #metoo movements that have started up in the Nordic countries.

“The #MeToo movement has turned the Nordic Region on its head, uncovering systematic failures, a lack of leadership, and ignorance in many parts of our society in a somewhat dramatic fashion. Several different movements gained traction in the Nordic countries, with the cultural sector often in the spotlight.”

Several areas of the cultural sector have been put in the spotlight, and the ministers stress that continued discussion is of equal importance for all their areas of responsibility.

“We, the Nordic ministers for culture, are determined to do everything we can to bring this change to pass. We have so much to learn from each other’s experiences, which is why going forwards our emphasis will continue to be on discussion, be this at a national, Nordic, or international level. And these discussions will command equal importance in all our areas of responsibility – culture, media, and sport.”

Nordic co-operation and the sharing of experiences is vital in this issue. The Secretariat to the Nordic Council of Ministers has now been tasked with preparing ways in which discussions and the sharing of knowledge can be further developed.

“Gender equality is key to the success of the Nordic Model, and so it’s obvious that a gender equality perspective must shape everything we do within the Nordic Council of Ministers for Culture. What is also obvious is that there is much more to be achieved from Nordic co-operation, which is why we are instructing our Secretariat to explore ways in which the discussion can evolve with regard to efforts to prevent sexual harassment and to ensure safe workplaces within our areas of responsibility.”

“And even if momentum wanes, we will see this issue through to the end.”

The ministerial meeting in Malmö on 9 May was held within the framework of the cultural-political summit in Malmö on 8 and 9 May 2018.

This article was originally published on Norden.org

Image credist: Norden.org – Bengt Flemark / Region Skåne (Faroese minister of culture, Ms. Rigmor Dam, #4  from the right)

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