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Meghan Markle tackles gender equality in impassioned essay

Published 22/11/2016

Meghan Markle
Meghan Markle

Meghan Markle has always been determined to speak up when she knows something is wrong, crediting her parents for giving her such a prominent social consciousness.

Prince Harry's girlfriend Meghan Markle is hoping to use her voice to encourage people to "focus less on glass slippers and more on pushing through glass ceilings".

The Suits actress, whose relationship with the British royal was revealed in October (16), penned an impassioned essay for Elle UK, revealing she is hoping to use her profile to promote gender equality in Hollywood and throughout the world.

Meghan explained in the essay that she knew when she was cast in hit U.S. legal comedy-drama series Suits that she had a responsibility to say "something of value."

"With fame comes opportunity, but it also includes responsibility – to advocate and share, to focus less on glass slippers and more on pushing through glass ceilings. And, if I'm lucky enough, to inspire," she added.

Meghan insisted she isn't trying to slam Hollywood, because she is well aware that the industry "gives people an escape, a catalyst to laugh and to balance the realities of life."

"Plus, my gig as a working actor is the hand that feeds me," she continued. "Without that, I could never be the hand that feeds another at this level. Were it not for my show and website, I would never have been asked to be a global ambassador for World Vision or an advocate for UN Women, both of which are honours I relish."

Meghan also used the essay to open up about her own upbringing. Recalling the way she was raised by her parents, Meghan revealed her family inspired her to become a humanitarian and "global citizen".

"I was born and raised in Los Angeles. My mother was a free-spirited clinical therapist and I had the most hard-working father, a television lighting director by trade. My mum raised me to be a global citizen, with eyes open to sometimes harsh realities," she said. "We spent time travelling to remote places, taking trips to Oaxaca in southern Mexico where I saw children peddling Chiclets candy for a few extra pesos to bring home.

"My parents came from little so they made a choice to give a lot: buying turkeys for homeless shelters at Thanksgiving, delivering meals to people in hospices, giving spare change to those asking for it. It's what I grew up seeing, so it's what I grew up being: a young adult with a social consciousness to do what I could and speak up when I knew something was wrong."

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