In line with Izmir Metropolitan Mayor Tunç Soyer's understanding of a "woman-friendly city", awareness operations for gender equality are being carried out as part of the fight with the violence against women.
The Programmes Coordinator of United Nations Women's Unit Zeliha Ünaldı, General Secretary of Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Dr. Buğra Gökçe, ESHOT's General Manager Erhan Bey, male deputy secretary generals of the Metropolitan Municipality, department heads serving in the Metropolitan Municipality, ESHOT and İZSU, deputy general managers and supervisory board chairmen attended the workshop of the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality in cooperation with the United Nations Women's Unit (UN Women) for male executives involved in public decision-making for the first time in Turkey.
"We must sincerely believe in equality"
Speaking at the "Participation of Men and Boys in Gender Equality" workshop which was held at Örnekköy Social Projects Campus, Mayor Tunç Soyer said "we must change our perspective and sincerely believe in equality. I believe that Izmir Metropolitan Municipality should lead this great change."
"We care about men's participation in gender equality for the change"
Zeliha Ünaldı, the Programmes Coordinator at the UN Women's Unit, said that it is necessary to fight norms and stereotypes based on gender inequality together and added: "Behavioural change in early and forced marriages in childhood, which are a type of violence against women, is possible with the change and transformation of the perception of gender. As the UN Women's Unit, we care about men’s and boys' participation in gender equality for this change and transformation." Zeliha Ünaldı also thanked Mayor Tunç Soyer for personally participating in the workshop.
Who if not me?
The second part of the program, moderated by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Murat Göç Bilgin, a lecturer at Celal Bayar University and the advisor to the UN Women's Unit, focused on what can be done to encourage men and boys to adopt roles based on equality.
At the end of the workshop, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Göç Bilgin asked the participants, "What are the responsibilities that come with being a man and how do we change them", and asked everyone to write their thoughts on paper and hang them on the board. In his note, Mayor Tunç Soyer mentioned the so-called superiority that men claim to have over women and added, "There should be more women who are senior-level managers."
The photographs taken through the notes will be shared on the social media accounts of Un Women HeForShe and Izmir Metropolitan Municipality with the hashtag #BenDegilsemKim (#WhoIfNotMe) under "Izmir Metropolitan Municipality Supports Gender Equality."
The "Participation of Men and Boys in Gender Equality" workshop, organized within the scope of the United Nations Joint Program for the Prevention of Early and Forced Marriages in Childhood in Turkey, aims a discussion focusing on men taking action to transform traditional norms of masculinity by adopting egalitarian roles.