‘Don’t worry about body image on the beach’: the Spanish government for women

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The Spanish government has a message for women who feel uncomfortable about their bodies when wearing swimwear: don’t be like that. The government’s Equality Ministry launched a summer campaign Thursday to encourage women to reject “stereotyping” and “aesthetic violence,” a reference to social pressures some women feel to conform to beauty ideals.

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A poster advertising the campaign shows women of different ages, sizes and skin colors in swimwear on a beach. The slogan is: “Summer is ours too.” In a tweet, Equality Minister Irene Montero said: “Enjoy (the summer) anyway, wherever and with whoever you want.” The head of the Women’s Institute, a government agency, said gender stereotypes are at the root of discrimination based on appearance. Expectations are projected on women about what they should look like,” Antonia Morillas told state news agency Efe.

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“Not only does that affect our self-esteem, it also takes away our rights and limits how we behave in and whether we enjoy public spaces.” Spain’s socialist-led coalition government, which came to power four years ago, has made women’s rights one of its political banners.

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