UCC café removes adverts after students complain of sexism

A campus café has been forced to remove its latest advertising after students described the signage as sexist.

University College Cork, its students union, and its Feminist Society all objected to the pink signs erected in the college’s student centre. The sign bore slogans such as ‘What’s Your Cup Size?’, ‘Cheap looking!!’ and ‘Does my bun look big in this?’, all accompanied by illustrations of women. 

Pink coffee cups bearing the slogans were also served to students.

James Upton, Deputy President of the UCC Student’s Union, said that the body registered its objection to the signs with the management of the Student Centre following a meeting of the union executive on Wednesday night. 

A spokesperson for UCC said the college also objected to the signage.

"University College Cork is committed to equality as a core value of the institution," the spokesperson said.  

READ NEXT  UCC Feminist Society 'outraged' by 'disrespectful' advertising

 "When, yesterday afternoon, the University became aware of the advertising campaign of the Student Centre it made its views known on the unacceptability of such a campaign.    

As a result  the Student Centre, which is run as a separate entity, removed the offensive messages last night."


UCC Feminist Society are incredibly outraged by this so called 'advertising' seen in the Student Centre advertising the...

Posted by UCC Feminist Society on Wednesday, 13 January 2016




Ellie Mahony, auditor of the UCC FemSoc said that the management of the student centre were co-operative when the issue was raised, and praised the action of the Students Union and College, but said that the advertising campaign feeds into a wider issue facing young women in third level education.

“It all feeds into a bigger issue, young women are the victims of sexual assault and rape on a regular basis,” Ms Mahony said.

Last year one in seven respondents of a survey of UCC students said they have been a victim of rape or serious sexual assault.

The survey was completed by 333 students, two-thirds of whom are women.

“Slut-shaming and comments on how women dress are major issues, as is cat-calling. Signs like this enable a culture in which such behaviour is seen as ok,” she said.

Ms Mahony also praised society members and the wider public who raised the issue when the signs went up yesterday, and said that their vocal objection led to a speedy resolution of the matter.

“We immediately got comments from a number of students via email, that was a red flag and a sign that we needed to take decisive action,” she said.

Ms Mahony said that the signs were to be removed immediately, but that it was not yet known what was to be done with the offending coffee cups. 



Bryan Stevenson is the American civil rights lawyer who provided the inspiration for the newly-released film Just Mercy. Esther McCarthy spoke to him in IrelandReal-life lawyer Bryan Stevenson on inspiring Just Mercy

So I’ve booked my holidays. And before you ask, yes, I’m basing it around food and wine. I’ll report back in July, but I thought readers might be interested in my plan should you be thinking about a similar holiday.Wines to pick up on a trip to France

Esther N McCarthy is on a roll for the new year with sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes.Wish List: Sustainable solutions, cool citruses and vintage vibes

They have absolutely nothing really to do with Jerusalem or indeed with any type of artichoke, so what exactly are these curious little tubers?Currabinny Cooks: Exploring the versatility of Jerusalem artichokes

More From The Irish Examiner