Tuesday, May 24

With #StOpE, companies take action against mainstream sexism at work

These are small remarks, gestures or behaviors that seem harmless but which, put together, disqualify women from the labor market. To fight against these manifestations of “ordinary sexism”, companies, schools and organizations are mobilizing this January 25, national day against sexism, through the #StOpE initiative.

Since its creation in 2018, by Accor, EY and L’Oréal, more than 140 actors have joined this program by signing the act of commitment. Placed under the high patronage of Elisabeth Moreno, Minister Delegate for Equality between Women and Men, #StOpE (Stop Ordinary Sexism in Business) aims to “mutualize energies” and “to spread the good practice”.

The initiative has been led and coordinated by the French Association of Diversity Managers (AFMD) since January 11, 2021. The latter defines so-called ordinary sexism as “all attitudes, comments and behaviors based on gender stereotypes […] and which, although seemingly innocuous, have the object or effect, consciously or unconsciously” of “delegitimising” and “insidiously even benevolently inferiorizing” women.

So many attitudes that “damage the quality of life at work”, “create suffering” and constitute “a waste of energy and a brake on the expression of potential”. On a daily basis, this ordinary sexism manifests itself through “sexist jokes and comments, remarks about motherhood, negative stereotypes, incivility or marks of disrespect, unsolicited compliments or criticisms of physical appearance, exclusion”.

The signatories of the #StOpE act of commitment meet in March, June and October, during quarterly meetings intended to allow organizations to discuss the actions carried out or the tools developed. Their thinking revolves around eight priority commitments.

Apply “the principle of zero tolerance”

It is a question of “displaying and applying the principle of zero tolerance”, of “informing to raise awareness of sexist behavior (acts, words, attitudes) and their impacts”, but also of “training in a targeted way on the obligations and best practices for combating the phenomenon.

The fourth commitment consists of “disseminating educational tools to employees to deal with sexist behavior in the workplace” and the next to “encourage all employees to contribute, prevent, identify sexist behavior and react to ordinary sexism “.

The signatory companies also undertake to “accompany in a personalized way the victims” of sexism, “witnesses and decision-makers in the recovery and management of sexist acts”. A follow-up which also involves “sanctioning reprehensible behavior and communicating on the associated sanctions”. Finally, the act of commitment asks the signatories to “measure and set up monitoring indicators to adapt the policy to fight against ordinary sexism”.

By participating in #StOpE, companies commit to implementing at least one action per year within their organization. New signatories are admitted each year on January 25, during an integration session. In 2022, the CentraleSupelec school is one of the newcomers, ready to fight sexism as it should.


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