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Keys and Gray – Sexism in the workplace returns


 - Keys and Gray – Sexism in the workplace returns

After the recent scandal involving Sky Sports presenters Andy Gray and Richard Keys, sexism in the workplace has returned to the top of the news agenda, with many commentators stunned at the fact that such old-fashioned prejudice is still alive and well in today’s society.

For those of you residing under a rather substantial rock, Keys and Gray were recently caught on microphone making disparaging comments about female referee’s-assistant Sian Massey.

The gist of their argument was that Massey couldn’t possibly be up to the job on the sole grounds that she was female. No matter that she’d spent years plying her trade in the lower divisions, nor that she’s widely regarded as one of the rising stars in the FA’s drive to recruit young, talented officials.

No, according to the prehistorically-minded presenters she’d clearly just flashed a bit of thigh outside the stadium, and had somehow charmed her way down to the touchline.

Further revelations went on to show Gray asking a female colleague to tuck his microphone down his trousers, whilst Keys was recorded talking about a female acquaintance of pundit Jamie Redknapp, and inquiring as to whether he’d “smashed-it”.

Needless to say, after a few days of tabloid thunder, Gray was hastily dismissed over charges of misconduct.

Keys would cling on for a couple more days before eventually accepting that his position had become untenable. However, in the interim, he still found time to record a sensational radio interview in which he dismissed the idea of sexism in the work place and tried to brush off his remarks as “banter”, likening his opinions to those held in “pubs, clubs and dressing rooms” up and down the country.

But are these really the sorts of opinions held by the modern British male?

Is this sort of sexism in the workplace confined to the macho world of football, or are similar boys clubs holding sway in other industries too? And if men are all sweetness and light with their loved ones (“Richard was never sexist at home”, was the general line peddled by Keys’ wife and sister), then why do they feel the need to crank-up the testosterone when they are with their mates?


George Wales
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