- This Christmas, Australian parents are being urged to de-gender their presents
- The No Gender December campaigners have received support by The Good Education Group as they stand against gender-related inequalities and barriers for children
- Gender-neutral toys are being designed to fight against current gender stereotypes
If you’re unsure as to what to get your little boy for Christmas this year, know that parents in Australia are being encouraged to think outside the box and “Buy a Boy a Barbie”.
Funded by advocacy group Unlimited Play, a grassroots movement known as No Gender December has been gaining a lot of momentum since its establishment back in 2014, as it fights against gender barriers and gender stereotyped presents.
Chris Lester, CEO for the leading educational publisher The Good Education Group, has shown support to the campaigners, publicly declaring that parents should consider a more open-minded approach when it comes to presents for their children and to join in the No Gender December movement by de-gendering their ideal Christmas gift.
“The movement correlates with the perception that STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) are fields dominated by men and avoided by women, and just as toy stores typically separate ‘girls’ from ‘boys’ toys, workplaces tend to be sharply divided between ‘pink’ and ‘blue’ jobs,” said Lester.
It’s that imbalance in gendered toys and the associated stereotypes that the movement is addressing, hoping for a change in society’s views and mindset.
“There’s an exciting new wave of gender-neutral toys designed to encourage more girls to develop fundamental skills in maths and science beyond stereotypes,” added Lester.
Despite all the support the group has received in the past, it hasn’t come without some criticism. Former Liberal Prime Minister Tony Abbott, for instance, stated that he wanted “boys to be boys and girls to be girls” in an attempt at political correctness.
But although the principal of this campaign is morally strong and it’s something most of us can agree with, it may be wise to just focus on your child’s happiness as the main source of inspiration for their Christmas present. Just don’t forget to tell Santa!