Mexico City, 29 March 2021 – The Unstereotype Alliance today launches a national chapter in Mexico, on the inaugural day of the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico City. A coalition of nine major advertisers and industry associations have united to combat harmful stereotypes in the country’s advertising and media content.
Convened by UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment, the Unstereotype Alliance is a thought and action platform that seeks to eradicate harmful stereotypes from advertising and media. Mexico is the Alliance’s eighth national chapter to launch worldwide and, following Brazil in 2019, its second in Latin America.
As the second largest advertising market in the region, the Mexico chapter harnesses a powerful collective of founding members including AVE, Fundación Chedraui, Diageo, Mars, PepsiCo, Publicis Groupe, Sony Music, Unilever and WPP. The chapter’s work will address gender stereotypes in advertising with a focus on progressive portrayals of women and men in non-traditional roles in the home and in the workplace. A second focus will be to transform the objectification of women and harmful masculinities in media and advertising that reinforce gender-based violence.
Speaking at the launch event, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said: “The launch of the Unstereotype Alliance Mexico National chapter at this pivotal moment during the Generation Equality Forum in Mexico is a welcome milestone that underscores the role of private sector partnerships in our collective agenda for gender equality. In tackling the stereotypes that hold women and girls back, the Unstereotype Alliance supports the Forum’s aims of achieving immediate and irreversible progress towards gender equality. I congratulate all the founding members of the Mexico chapter and thank our partners for joining us in eliminating all harmful stereotypes in your advertising and media for broad and lasting cultural change and the achievement of a green, equitable, gender-responsive and inclusive world.”
Destructive stereotypes proliferate advertising and media content in Mexico and hinder progress towards gender equality. Findings from UN Women’s Gender Equality Attitudes study in Mexico revealed that only one in five women feel safe in public spaces. 67 per cent of respondents believe media in Mexico (television, advertisements, or public communication) portrays women and men in traditional roles and 45 per cent of people believe when a mother works for pay, the children suffer. In addition, Mexico’s ITF Study on advertising in 2019 found almost 50 per cent of ads in Mexico include sexist stereotypes.
Belén Sanz, UN Women Representative, Mexico Country Office, said: “The private sector, the advertising industry and the media play a fundamental role in constructing a gender-equal society. The Mexican chapter of the Unstereotype Alliance is taking the first steps towards a future with gender equality through eradicating harmful gender-based stereotypes in all media and advertising content. By addressing gender stereotypes in advertising, members of the Unstereotype Alliance Mexico chapter will focus on progressive portrayals of women and men in non-traditional roles both in the home and in the workplace and will contribute to the creation of more equal societies.”
Rosario Zavala, President of the Equality & Inclusion Committee, AVE said: “For AVE it is essential to be an ally of Unstereotype Alliance. Mexico has high levels of inequality, and it is reflected in media content. In line with our purpose, being part of this initiative will allow us to strengthen our influence on brands so they can create new narratives, content and advertising free of stereotypes to add value to our economy and to our people.”
Ignacio González Quirsco, General Director, Fundación Chedraui, said: “At Fundación Chedraui we are committed to inclusion and gender equality. It is essential to join forces as companies and associations to promote equality and women’s empowerment. We believe that union makes strength and partnerships to foster initiatives to improve the role of women in Mexico, as well as its conditions, and the elimination of stereotypes are a key part of the success of the Unstereotype Alliance.”
Alan Loredo, Director of Corporate Relations, Diageo Mexico, said: “At Diageo, we drive, champion and celebrate diversity and inclusion in all aspects of our business. Being part of the Unstereotype Alliance Chapter in Mexico and joining efforts with other leading companies, confirms our local and global commitment to generate change and eradicate gender stereotypes in advertising. As an advertiser, we support progressive voices, we celebrate diversity and we contribute every day, hand in hand with our brands and their advertising campaigns, to shape a tolerant society and promote a positive change in the industry and the world.”
Andrea Dávila, Regional Sr. Manager Brands & Content, Mars Wrigley, said: “At Mars we believe the world we want tomorrow starts with how we do business today. We are a privately held business built on a culture that invites, values, and engages every Associate voice equally and we believe we must do the same to engage consumers in our advertising campaigns. The marketing of our brands must speak to, and celebrate, the diversity of the audiences who enjoy them”.
Hernán Tantardini, Vice President and General Manager, Sabritas, PepsiCo Mexico Foods, said: “We have a mandate to represent women and men in an inclusive and diverse way – it is a call for equity, but also an imperative that the consumer demands of us. We are proud to join the Unstereotype Alliance so that Mexico becomes the spearhead for diverse marketing.”
Lila López Negrete, Marketing Director, Food Product Division, Unilever Mexico, said: “At Unilever we are aware that more than half of people consider that the Beauty and Personal Care Industry can make them feel left out. Faced with this problem that exists around stereotypes in advertising, we join the Unstereotype Alliance, in favour of gender equality and in favour of the elimination of biases, even more so considering the context that we are living, where the empowerment of women is the tool that will break down barriers, helping women to develop and reach their full potential.”
Polo Garza, Chairman, WPP Mexico, said: “WPP has supported the Unstereotype Alliance since the beginning and we are very happy to be part of this alliance in Mexico. We believe that unstereotyping the roles and the situation of women in advertising and content is a very powerful way to educate society regarding inclusion, diversity, gender equality and racism. I am certain that the media, the communication Industry, and advertisers will come together and support this initiative because it is the right thing to do.”
The Mexico national chapter launches at a time of accelerated growth for the Unstereotype Alliance, which has grown seven-fold since its establishment in 2017. Worldwide membership currently sits at 173 companies and industry organisations, including eight national chapters on five continents, with plans to launch a further seven chapters in 2021.