Equal Opportunities Commission


Press Releases

Press Releases

EOC Calls On Government to Monitor and Regulate Print Advertisements


Dr. Fanny Mui-ching Cheung, Chairperson of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) called on the Government to monitor and regulate print advertisements which may be offensive to the public.

A recent advertisement featuring a woman's legs with the words [come on up] has set off public anger and outrage. But there is no channel for complaint.

There is obviously a gap in government mechanisms which monitor and regulate advertisements. The public can complain to the Broadcasting Authority about electronic advertising that denigrate women or are provocative in nature but where print advertising is concerned, the public has no place to turn.

Dr Cheung said, "We looked into the problem last October and wrote to both the Secretary for Home Affairs and the Secretary for Information Technology and Broadcasting and was told that print advertising comes under the Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance. We were told that nothing could be done where an advertisement is found to be denigrating or suggestive but not obscene."

Sexist and denigrating presentation of women constitutes a form of discrimination against women. Article 5 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) requires the government to take appropriate measures to eliminate sexual prejudices and stereotypes.

Enquiry: EOC Hotline       25118211