Meghan Markle and Gloria Steinem’s friendship is still going strong.
At the Women’s Media Center’s 2022 Women’s Media Awards last week, Steinem — a co-founder of the organization — opened up about her relationship with the Duchess of Sussex.
When asked about why she partnered up with Meghan for a candid conversation about reproductive rights in Vogue earlier this year, Steinem had nothing but kind words for her friend, whom she called a “great human being.”
“I’m not an expert on the media, but it seems to me that she is different from the picture of her in the media,” the feminist activist tells PEOPLE. “She’s smart and funny and devoted to social issues.”
“Maybe it’s the British tabloids that are the problem,” Steinem adds with a laugh.
The pair’s conversation earlier this year wasn’t the first time that they teamed up. Meghan, 41, and Steinem, 88, joined forces two years ago to have a “backyard chat” about the importance of voting.
“For a while, we were living almost next… well, what in California counts as next door, which is like 45 minutes away,” Steinem said. “So we got to know each other.”
During their chat in 2020, Steinem gifted the Duchess with a bracelet that reads: “We are linked not ranked.” Upon receiving it, Meghan said that the phrase “means everything to me on every level,” and it continues to hold great significance to the feminist icon.
“I think we as human beings — or maybe living things on planet Earth, right? — are linked, not ranked,” Steinem tells PEOPLE. “We have systems of race and gender and class that rank us, and that’s actually not accurate.”
Later that year, the Duchess of Sussex “came over to the little farmhouse” where Steinem was staying, and they cold-called voters together from her dining room table.
When asked whether she and Meghan will team up again, Steinem says that she will help the Duchess of Sussex with “any of her projects” if she can, especially as “she and her husband are doing media projects.”
Outside of projects, Steinem says that they will continue their relationship “as friends.”