Michelle Cove
January 3, 2018

MEDIAGIRLS state their 2018 list of demands for girls & women

For this month’s Youth Advisory Board mission, we asked our girls to tell us the change they most want to see for girls and women in 2018. They came up with the following powerful responses, hitting on a wide variety of topics with clarity and determination.
The biggest change I want to see for girls and women in 2018 is self acceptance. It’s easy to preach that all bodies are beautiful, and still feel bad about your own. I hope that girls and women can feel good in their skin, and help others do the same. In this day and age, with social media what it is, feeling self conscious is something many people I know, including myself, do. We need to work hard to promote the idea that there isn’t just one healthy body type, and we must remind ourselves and others that this is true. – Claire

In light of the recent wave of conversation of sexual assault and harassment, I hope we are active in creating change that makes girls and boys feel safer in their own classrooms, workplaces and general communities. I hope we enact policies, stand up for our friends, and continue to prove that such ill treatment of each other is unacceptable. I think it’s important, in order for children and adults to feel safer in their spaces, and therefore more productive members of their families, neighborhoods, and general communities. – Kakazi

I would love to see more women being confident in themselves and loving themselves in the new year. Society has given us the “Perfect Woman” that everyone should want to be, which really makes no sense at all. The key word here is should. Why does society say women should want to be someone they’re not, when who they are is already wonderful and amazing? I’m really glad that lately society has been changing. Not enough yet, but we are helping by changing the media and so are others. There is not one “perfect woman” because nobody is perfect, but everyone is definitely beautiful. I hope that soon, everyone will be able to love themselves without being shamed by society. This will be a long process, but every year, more and more women will be confident in their own bodies. This new year will be another year for more women to be themselves and this is another great reason to celebrate! – Hannah
It’s a change we’re already starting to see at the end of 2017, which is women finding the courage to speak up for each other and themselves. We need to be stronger and braver now more than ever, and finding a way to have our ideas, identities, and struggles represented is extremely important. On that note, I would love to see more women lead roles in TV and film (and female characters who are written like real women with flaws and problems, but are also role models for girls to look up to!). – Annie

I want there to be less victim-blaming when it comes to cases of sexual harassment or assault. Right now, with the whole #MeToo movement and all kinds of allegations coming out against powerful men, it’s especially important for everyone to realize that sexual harassment is NEVER a girl or woman’s fault. If we want sexual harassment to end, we must hold men accountable for their actions by acknowledging that sexual harassment is the fault of the aggressor, not the victim. – Maisie

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The biggest change I want to see for girls and women in 2018 is to stop being blamed when women are sexually harassed and assaulted. I want this for all victims of sexual assault, but the majority that do go through this are women. Ideally, sexual harassment and assault would be eradicated in 2018, but that is not necessarily a realistic goal for one year. Instead, I would like for when women do go through these ordeals and finally feel as though they can speak out, they will be received with empathy and love. I am tired of looking online and seeing a victim being shamed and blamed for being sexually assaulted. It is never the victim’s fault. So, I hope that in 2018, society can be more open-minded and empathetic to victims of sexual assault, which will then lead to stopping sexual assault. –Olivia

In 2018, I would like to see more girls and women speak up about what they believe, and what they believe in. This has been happening more in the past couple years, but I think every girl and every women should be doing it. I also would like to see everyone understand the real definition of feminism. Some men and women believe that it is saying that women are better. Some women call themselves “feminists” and say that women are better than men. But that isn’t the point of feminism. The point of feminism is to have equal rights for both men and women, not say that either one is better or worse. So twos changes I want to see in 2018 is for all women (and men) to understand the real definition of feminism, and for more women to speak up on their opinions about things.  Amari

The biggest thing I want to see change for girls in the new year, is for them to be themselves. There are so many things that could fall into that category, but it’s so important. I think this is really important because I know that if girls and women would be themselves and figure out what works for them, they would actually become a lot happier. There needs to be less feeling pressured to follow beauty standards, and feeling the need to do things that the stereotypical girl their age does. –Risa

The biggest change I’d like to see in 2018 is for girls and women to have both the social and political platform to be angry not only about the way they’ve been treated, but also about other issues that concern them. I’d like to see this change because oftentimes women and girls take on the sad, quiet “I’m fine” approach to things they disagree with which usually gets themselves and the issue they’d like to address no where.  –Sasha