Recently I have observed some disturbing trends in advertisements. Some ads targeting prospective employees contain puzzling requirements. For example “Wanted, female accountant’; “Vacancy, Christian teacher.” I can understand the rationale of someone seeking a male sperm donor, but what accounting skills can a female have that a male cannot?
I have also seen ads requiring prospective storekeepers, office clerks and security guards to submit a photograph with their initial application. Again, such a request in an ad for a model is reasonable; however, what information can a photograph provide to a potential employer about a clerical applicant − could it be ethnicity?
Media houses should examine these issues carefully. I make no appeal to the Ethnic Relations Commission since in my opinion that body relinquished all credibility when it failed to support the idea of the right of non-heterosexuals to legal equality. The media should formulate and implement standards for advertisers to ensure that they are not perceived to condone discriminatory ideas. Further legislation to enforce constitutionally guaranteed equality as it relates to hiring practices should be enacted.