Friday 29 January 2021 11:28 am

Government pulls Covid advert after ‘1950s sexism’ complaints

The government has pulled a coronavirus public health ad urging Brits to stay at home following complaints that it portrayed “1950s sexism”.

The advert showed four households — three with women doing housework and looking after children and one with a man reclining on a sofa. 

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The poster was lambasted online over its sexist depiction of women, with Labour MP Alex Davies-Jones accusing the government of “having a women problem”.

“The fact this advert was ever approved in the first place speaks volumes!” she wrote.

In a viral tweet behavioural and data scientist Pragya Agarwal said: “Who made this? And who approved it? Heteronormative. Reinforcing the view that it is a woman’s job to homeschool, clean, do the childcare.”

“Are the men out there fighting a war or something?,” she added.

The government last night confirmed it had withdrawn the advert, saying it did not reflect its views on women.

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The Advertising Standards Authority, which regulates the ad industry, warns that depictions of gender stereotypes are likely to cause “harm or serious or widespread offence”.

“An ad that depicts a man with his feet up and family members creating mess around a home while a woman is solely responsible for cleaning up the mess” is “likely to be unacceptable,” its guidance states.

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