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Scots 'more likely to recognise gender inequality problem'

New Ipsos MORI research has found Scots are more likely to identify gender inequality.

Survey: Scots are more likely to understand issues with equality.
Survey: Scots are more likely to understand issues with equality. Unsplash

Scots recognise that there is a problem with gender equality - but most of us don't see ourselves as 'feminists', a study has found.

Ahead of International Women's Day on Friday, new Ipsos MORI research shows that people in Scotland are more likely than those in most other countries to recognise that there is a problem with gender inequality.

Almost 60% of adults in Scotland believe that in today's society, there are more advantages to being a man, with just 8% saying there are more advantages to being a woman.

Scots are more likely to disagree with the statement that 'When it comes to giving women equal rights with men, things have gone far enough in Scotland' in comparison to other countries.

Seventy eight per cent of respondents also said that achieving equality between men and women was important to us personally, 17% more than the figure for Britain as a whole.

However, most do not see ourselves as feminists, with just 36% of working-age adults in Scotland agreeing that they define themselves as a feminist.

Gender equality is no longer seen as a 'women's issue', with both men and women in Scotland agreeing that men have an essential role to play.

A majority of both men and women agree that women in Scotland will not achieve equality unless men also take action to support women's rights.

Poll: Most Scots believe men should speak out if women are treated unfairly.
Poll: Most Scots believe men should speak out if women are treated unfairly. Unsplash

Whilst 69% of men and 79% of women think that more men speaking out when women are treated unfairly because of their gender would have a positive impact on equality.

According to the survey, 66% of men and 82% of women believe that men sharing more responsibility for raising children and looking after the home will have a positive impact on gender equality.

And staying at home to look after children is no longer considered potentially 'emasculating' - with the vast majority of both men (86%) and women (92%) in Scotland disagree that 'A man who stays home to look after his children is less of a man'.

Scots are even less likely to hold with this traditional view of men than others in Britain as a whole or elsewhere in the world.

But we are not convinced that equality will be achieved in the domestic sphere in the next 20 years, with 41% of adults in Scotland not confident that discrimination against women with respect to looking after children and the home will have ended in the next 20 years.

'These findings show that most people in Scotland share progressive views on gender equality, even if there's still some reticence about embracing the label of "feminist".'
Emily Gray, Ipos MORI Scotland

Many expect the gender gap to persist, with Scots divided over whether discrimination against women in Scotland will have ended in the next 20 years:

Scots were most confident about the gap closing in government and politics, while people were least confident about discrimination ending for those in the business sector over the next two decades.

Emily Gray, Managing Director of Ipsos MORI Scotland, said: "These findings show that most people in Scotland share progressive views on gender equality, even if there's still some reticence about embracing the label of 'feminist'.

"They also highlight that men in general, and fathers in particular, play an essential role in achieving gender equality.

"While most of us don't hold stereotyped attitudes to men and childcare, there are clearly still major barriers to be overcome to make gender equality a reality, both inside and outside the home.

"Equal pay and preventing domestic abuse are both seen as top priorities for Scotland to focus on in achieving gender equality."

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