lisaPUP Senator Lisa Shoman is still not satisfied with the response of BTL following her open letter to the company’s executives in which she expressed grave concern and condemnation of two campaign ads that were published on the company’s Facebook page. Today she replied to the correspondence from BTL in which, as reported before, the Executive Chairman Anwar Barrow conceded that the two ads were in fact offensive. The board of directors met on August sixth and pledged to conduct more conscientious advertising. Shoman was partly appeased but she states in her reply to the letter that BTL still did not meet many of her other demands that were stated in her first letter to the company.


According to Shoman, there was no public apology but an apology only to those offended by the ads. Shoman also states that BTL did not state explicitly that that kind of advertisement would never happen again. She also proceeds to point out that BTL did not mention in its release whether anyone or if persons would be facing repercussions for the offensive ads. She says that if BTL knows who created, approved and posted the ads on Facebook there must be consequences and if BTL does not know then an investigation to find out who did it must be carried out.


Shoman also contends that at BTL it is not the lack of diversity that’s a problem. She says that BTL’s employees need training in gender justice and equality as their quote, “offensive and miso-gynistic ads deal with women differently than they do with men,” unquote. She goes on to say that BTL has, quote, “missed an invaluable opportunity to demonstrably appreciate the actual problem, let alone the level and extent,” unquote.


Finally, she states that BTL’s board of directors is silent on the matter of the swift development and implementation of a corporate gender and human rights policy and a zero tolerance policy of misogyny and degradation of women at all corporate levels.  Shoman ends her letter making a reference to the company’s summer campaign theme. She states and we quote, “’talk cheap this summer’, proclaims that latest Digicell campaign. It is incumbent on the BTL Board of Directors and the Management of BTL to demonstrate in concrete terms that this is also not a corporate mantra.  Don’t just tell us that you care, show us, unquote.

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