POWER DRESSING: ELECTION SPECIAL

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Power dressing came to life in the 70s and 80s as a way for women to establish their authority and fit into male-dominated workplaces. For a quick explainer on the concept and how men use power dressing in different ways, see our audio short below:

 

As its election time EN4 news cast a balanced eye at the leaders of the main political parties – are they power dressing like a pro or is their fashion sense as dead as their election chances? We used the original master of power dressing to help us:

all the thatchers together real.jpg

Boris Johnson 

Our PM finally displayed his ready-for-action capabilities when he wandered through flood-hit Yorkshire. While he always looks a bit out of place the wellies-Barbour Jacket-overly long tie combo is doing something for me here. While part of power dressing is wearing appropriate clothing for the situation Johnson manages to pull of the politician in a crisis look fairly well here. As always though, the suit is a politicians bread-and-butter. Like his blonde counterpart across the ocean, Johnson could really use a new tailor.

3 thatchers out of 5

Jeremy Corbyn

Britain Politics

Credit: Times of Israel

 

Can socialists simultaneously strive for equality and look good while doing it?  Well, just look at that scarf. Combined with his trademark pastel shirt under an open blazer, the days of being slammed for his dress sense seem a long time ago. The blue suit is too loud and flashy to be pure Thatcher style however – though that’s probably a relief for the Labour leader.

 

4 thatchers out of 5

Jo Swinson

Oh Jo. If Ed Miliband taught us anything in 2015, it’s don’t eat on the campaign trail. Away from that, having canvassed opinion in the EN4 News Room there’s a consensus that the red coat over the blue is a colour clash too far. At least the purple jacket is nice if you look away from the marshmallow. The Lib Dems can’t win here I’m afraid.

2 thatchers out of 5

Nicola Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon gets the campaign trail: wear stylish business clothing while charming as many people as possible. She conveys the confidence of a politician in her prime. The guitar was a fun look too.

5 thatchers out of 5

Nigel Farage

The leader of the Brexit Party splits opinion and looking strictly at his fashion sense it’s splitting my opinion too. The flat cap, tweed and yellow trousers are all striking and support his something-different political vibe – but power dressing it is not. Could you imagine a man in yellow trousers addressing the nation from Downing Street?

1 thatcher out of 5

What about you?

Are you more like a Thatcher or a Farage? If you’re an aspiring male politician (or just an aspiring male in general) take our quiz and see how you stack up compared to our political leaders.

 

THE WINTER LOOK BOOK

In our winter look book it’s all about layering; keeping warm and looking cool. Check it out below.

 

The weather is taking a turn and the time has come to update your wardrobe for the new season. Here’s a breakdown of what you need to do to perfect that winter look.

LAYER UP

Its getting to that point where one jumper just won’t cut it. Try to find combinations where you can wear more than one warm layer.

FIND THAT COAT

A winter wardrobe is built around a good coat. Try to find that coat that can be dressed up during the week and dressed down at the weekend. The right accessories can take a coat from office appropriate to party ready.

GET CREATIVE

Don’t be afraid t get creative and try to find new combinations to give the same old clothes a new leash of life. There might be some neglected pieces in your wardrobe that end up back in the regular rotation when you find a new way to wear them.

MEAT AND MASCULINITY – SHOULD WE FOLLOW SCHWARZENEGGER AND THE ROMANS’ EXAMPLE?

 

Parks and Rec character Ron Swanson is known for his devotion to meat (Credit: https://onscreensightseeing.wordpress.com/)

The relationship between masculinity and meat-eating is a complicated one. Even when more and more people are deciding to choose vegan and vegetarian diets, they are usually female.

The view that meat is macho and is essential to the essence of a man is instilled into popular culture, but an increasing number of popular male figures are putting forward their arguments for a meat-free diet.

Arnold Schwarzenegger – who for many is an icon of masculinity known for his extremely muscular physique – recently revealed he does not eat meat.

A recent documentary, The Game Changers, followed athletes including Schwarzenegger, Olympic weightlifter Kendrick Faris, and NFL star Derrick Morgan, to discuss their transition from meat protein to plant protein.

The athletes cited improvements such as increased performance, reduced injuries and quicker recovery time.

In the documentary, Schwarzenegger discussed his first-hand experience with propaganda from the meat industry during his bodybuilding days, and the myth targeted to men that meat is necessary for creating ‘manly muscles’.

The documentary also referenced archaeological studies that revealed that Roman warriors – the physique of who continues to epitomise the male ideal – were in fact vegetarian.

Assessment of the graves of 22 Roman gladiators revealed they ate a diet consisting mainly of wheat, barley, and bean – echoing a contemporary term for the gladiators ‘the barley men’.

Meat is traditionally seen as the most viable source of protein however, science does suggest that sometimes this is mythical.

Tofu’s protein to carb ratio of 3:1 is better than beef. The vegetarian and vegan diet does not only benefit the plant, but the health benefits are also wide-ranging including lower cholesterol and a reduced risk of heart disease.

 

 

ALWAYS TO CHANGE PACKAGING IN BID TO CREATE AN ALL-INCLUSIVE SANITARY PRODUCT

With the growing awareness that sanitary products are not just used by women, leading manufacturer ALWAYS have announced that they will be launching their redesigned gender-neutral packaging in February 2020.

The UK’s leading sanitary towels brand is removing the Venus symbol from their product in attempt to be more inclusive and not isolate any communities.

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The Venus symbol traditionally used to represent the female gender

Young campaigner Ben Saunders was one of many calling for sanitary products to remove the female symbol from their design. He contacted ALWAYS in June 2019 and explained that by having the Venus symbol on the packaging, it was discriminatory to the transgender community.

Saunders, a young filmmaker and the 2019 winner of the Liverpool CR Pride’s Young Person of the Year award, documented the experiences of seven trans and non-binary people in the north west of England in a short film released this year to raise awareness of the negative experiences many young trans people deal with in schools. Ben became a campaigner for the transgender community after having suffered a difficult experience when attending an all-girls school as a transgender man.

Saunders says that for transgender men, menstruation is an already upsetting time and the existence of gender specific sanitary packaging can make the experience worse.

“For a trans person, seeing the ‘female’ symbol on packaging is just another unnecessary reminder of the dysphoria they’re often already feeling around this time,” Saunders says.

Some female customers of ALWAYS sanitary products have responded negatively to the removal of the female symbol and have complained that by removing the gendered packaging, it ‘erases’ the users.

However, ALWAYS have stated they are committed to diversity and inclusion and are attempting to make the packaging less discriminatory rather than cut off a large part of their customer demographic.

With this response it is clear that it may take a while for it to be widely accepted that ‘people experience periods’ rather than just one gender.

ALWAYS is the first UK sanitary product brand to create gender neutral packaging. Pressure will now be put on other companies to follow suit to stop the risk of the transgender and non-binary community feeling dysphoric and discriminated against.

Sometimes a person’s genetically assigned sex does not match their gender identity. Gender is a social construct, therefore, a person’s physical anatomy may not associate with the sex the person identifies as.

Click here to read more on the difference between sex and gender.

 

 

 

YOUNG CAMPAIGNER’S SHORT FILM HIGHLIGHTS THE NEGATIVE TREATMENT OF TRANSGENDER PEOPLE AT SCHOOL

In April this year, young campaigner Ben Saunders created a short film titled Transgender Experiences in School after having suffered a difficult experience when attending an all-girls school as a transgender man.

In an Instagram post promoting his film, Ben described the school as being “extremely unaccepting of anyone who identifies as transgender”. This led to his decision to focus his campaign on the negative experiences of transgender people in school.

The film includes interviews with seven trans and non-binary young people from across north west England. The project opens a discussion on the lack of understanding surrounding trans identities in school and how it leads to a negative effect on their mental health and education.

Ben produced the film as part of his campaign for the Stonewall Young Campaigners Programme – the programme entailed creating a campaign aimed at promoting LGBTQ+ rights and equality – and Ben was later named Stonewall’s Young Campaigner of the Year.

Click the link below to watch Transgender Experiences in Schools. 

SCOTLAND’S LAST REMAINING ONE-SEX STATE SCHOOL TO BECOME CO-EDUCATIONAL

Photo credit: geograph.org.uk

Scotland’s last single sex state school is set to become co-educational after campaign groups successfully fought for change.

The school has only taught girls since its establishment in 1897. The high-performing Notre Dame High School was placed 39th in performance levels in the graded league tables this year.

The City Administration Committee are scheduled to meet later this month, in which members will discuss the recommendations in order to make a decision regarding the future of the school.

Glasgow City Council released a recent advisory document for councillors ahead of the vote, which contains three options for the vote:

  • Option 1: No Change (39.9%)
  • Option 2: The school would remain as girls only, however the catchment area would extend. (13.7%)
  • Option 3: Change the entry criteria for Notre Dame High School to become co-educational and introduce male students. (45.7%)

Students from the state school held a protest last week objecting the option for the introduction of boys to the school.

In a statement released by the Notre Dame High School Pupil Representative Group,

“We believe that being in an all-girls school enables us to grow to our full potential,” a student said.

“We have a great ethos, encouraging everyone to try their very best, and this makes us amongst the highest performing Catholic schools in Scotland.

“Keep us unique. Keep us all girls.”

Following a consolation in the spring of 2017, regarding the issue, Glasgow City Council urged for more local support to be created before change could be considered. This led to the creation of the campaign and petition group Notre Dame High for All’ (NDH4ALL) who are fighting to allow male pupils to attend the high school.

 

If change is to happen it would be implemented gradually, with pupils being introduced from S1 rather than joining older year groups. An estimate of £750,000 of work would be needed to ensure the appropriate facilities were in place if male pupils were to be introduced.

Caitlin Gallagher, a former pupil, gives some insight into her experience:

“I attended Notre Dame High School from 2010 to 2016 and had an overall positive experience, however, I must agree that it is now time for a change.

“My choice of school didn’t hinder my education at all, in fact, I excelled in terms of academic results. However, once I moved on in life following 6th year I was faced with the realisation that it was social skills that I lacked.

“Learning in an all-girls environment allowed me to gain a lot of confidence and I felt as though my character flourished throughout high school. However, this created a false sense of security as when I entered further education I wasn’t used to being in a mixed-gender environment and found the setting intimidating.

“In my opinion, it is a fear of change that stops people from supporting the idea of a school that welcomes all genders. With Notre Dame High being such a close community and achieving such great results, I suppose people worry that this will be lost if the system is altered.

“However, having experienced both learning environments I feel that it is unfair and old fashioned to prohibit people from attending a school of their choice simply due to their gender. Although change will be a lengthy process it should be considered an exciting progression for the community.

“I am curious to see what benefits the introduction of male pupils will bring and although I wouldn’t change my secondary education experience it would be interesting to see how I would have developed both academically and socially if I was given the chance to learn in a co-education environment.”

FMQs; Snap Election And NHS The Main Talking Points

First Minister’s Questions took place today on the back of the Westminster government on Tuesday voting in support of a December 12th general election.

 

With MSPs off parliamentary duty last week, there was much to catch up on. Interim Scottish Conservatives leader Jackson Carlaw opened the questioning, citing Jeremy Corbyn’s announcement that Labour would allow a second Scottish Independence referendum if he became Prime Minister to suggest an alliance between Labour and SNP.

 

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon replied that whether it was Labour or the Conservatives ended up in power in a December election, the Westminster system is “broken” and that only the SNP would allow Scotland the power to decide its future.

Image result for nicola sturgeon holyrood

 

Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard asked the First Minister about the NHS, looking back to 2013 when the SNP said they wanted to make NHS workplaces “a great place to work.” He quoted a recent audit that said the NHS in Scotland is “running too hot, with too much pressure on staff” and said that around a quarter of staff sick hours are being taken up by stress-related absences.

 

The First Minister replied by stating that her government had increased NHS staffing by 13,000, more than a 10% increase. She also pointed out a 6% health budget increase in the last five years and said that if at the last Scottish election Labour had come into power, the NHS budget would be £758 million less than it is now.

 

Co-Leader of the Green party Alison Johnstone used her question to bring up short let controls for properties in Scotland. This has been a hot topic in Edinburgh recently, with an increase in landlords choosing short term lets being linked to a housing shortage. Johnstone asked the First Minister to put a timeline on when controls on short term letting would be put in place, with the First minister replying that she aimed to have proposals in place at the beginning of next year. Johnstone cited a 2017 short term letting control proposal that the SNP blocked, but Sturgeon insisted that it was important for constituencies to be able to decide if controls were necessary on their own rather than enforcing a “one size fits all” blanket ban.

 

As we head towards a snap election and Brexit continues to rumble on, the tense atmosphere visible at Holyrood today will only continue.

Jeremy Corbyn lauches Labour General Election Plan

Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn released his General Election campaign in Battersea this afternoon.

Corbyn has made some key promises to try and win over voters. EN4 News has listed his key campaign points:

  • Brexit will be done in six months

Corbyn has said six months into winning an election he will have the Brexit negotiations sorted with a people’s vote so the UK can “leave with a sensible deal or remain”. Which Corbyn says is not a complicated issue. Corbyn wants to deliver “real change” that he said Britain needs.

  • NHS is “not for sale”

Corbyn claims that Johnson has a “sell out” deal for the NHS that will copy an American corporation style health system, with big drug companies being in control of the healthcare and drug manufacturing. Corbyn said that the NHS is “not for sale” to Trump or to anyone else.

  • Public Ownership

Corbyn said he would put rail, mail and water in public ownership, taking it away from “Tory donors and shareholders in tax havens.”

Corbyn reiterated promises that he already made a few weeks ago when launched his campaign, promising a £10 an hour minimum wage for over 16s and free childcare for those with children aged 2-4 years.

Corbyn made jabs at his Tory counterpart, Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying that they are going to “fight dirtier” during this general election.  Corbyn said that he going to take on the people the Conservative Party likes to protect by going after “tax dodgers”, “dodgy landlords” and “big polluters”.

The Labour leader finished his speech by saying its “time for a change,” leaving people wondering what Labour’s next point of action will be.

 

 

EN4News UK Bulletin: 31/10/19

UK Correspondent Kris Gourlay runs thorugh today’s UK Headlines!

 

EN4News Local Bulletin: 31/10/19

Local Correspondent Heather Ferguson shares today’s local headlines!

 

 

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