Tag Archives: international women’s day

Lorely Burt writes: We can’t call ourselves a democracy when men monopolise public life

The theme for International Women’s Day 2017 is ‘Be Bold for Change’ – this got me thinking about how we, as Liberal Democrats, can do our bit to help forge a better and more gender equal world. Of course, as a party we have already taken a great leap forward for the future to make sure we reflect the diversity of the country with the ‘Electing Diverse MPs’ motion passed almost a year ago. But as individuals what can we do to make sure that more women get involved and active in the party at every level?

It was less than six months ago that we, both men and women pulling together, managed to get Sarah Olney elected to Parliament. Like many of you there was a defining moment that made her join the Liberal Democrats and get stuck in, but we have to remember that not all women will put themselves forward like that and some may need more encouragement than others. We all have a responsibility to reach out to those women we think would make great Liberal Democrat elected representatives, and let’s face it we can all think of one or two. The evidence is clear – if a woman is approached to stand then she is most likely to consider it.

Change will not happen overnight, it will take all our efforts to make these incremental changes. Let us never be complacent, as this year’s theme reminds us – we must be bold. We are a country that prides itself on being progressive and inclusive – yet Parliament, our country’s highest decision-making body, is only 30% female.

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Inspiring Lib Dem Women: Daisy Benson

On this International Women’s Day, we are celebrating some inspiring Lib Dem Women.

PPC for Yeovil Daisy Benson’s infectious liberalism and energy has led her to be one of the driving forces behind the Lib Dem Newbies group on Facebook.

As a councillor in Reading, she was the executive member for housing  and social care.

She was one of the most successful early social media campaigners, recognising that it’s not just a  broadcast platform but a space for dialogue.

Daisy is now concentrating her energies on winning back the Yeovil seat. We need her energy and ideas in Parliament.

This week she’s been featured on the Daily Politics. Watch below:

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International Women’s Day – Who cares?

Today we are celebrating International Women’s Day.  For some, it is a chance to recognise the achievements of women in the arts, sport and science; to others it is an opportunity to highlight inequalities. I wish to do both: to celebrate the contribution women make up and down this country although that contribution causes them more inequality. I speak of caring.

In the world of caring, women are indispensable. And undervalued. 58% of carers in the U.K. are women, but in relation to the number of hours worked the percentage is higher. European Parliament’s Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality commissioned report found that European women spend an average of 26 hours a week on caring activities, whilst men spend only 9 hours.

In the U.K., 73% of those who receive Carers’ Allowance (giving care more than 35 hours a week) are women. 38% of carers are caring for over 100 hours a week.

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Baroness Meral Hussein-Ece writes: 117 years is too long to wait for gender parity

This week we marked International Women’s Day, the theme of which was ‘Pledge for Parity,’ borne of the latest prediction from the World Economic Forum that we won’t achieve global gender parity until 2133. This date is further in the future than the previous prediction, reflecting the fact that progress internationally, is slowing down, not speeding up. We must take action to tackle it, here and abroad.

Although we have made great strides here in the UK, there is still much to do. The gender pay gap is still real; women make up just 29% of House of Commons, we have too few women in leadership roles in the civil service, business, as newspapers editors and in the diplomatic service.

Violence against women domestically and globally is still endemic. I’m a member of the Select Committee on Sexual Violence in Conflict, where we’ve heard some appalling evidence of how in some countries women’s lower status contributes to the violence they face. While there are so few women in positions of power internationally, violence continues to be widely used as a tool to keep women in their place.

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One Liberal Democrat man’s view of International Woman’s Day

Austin Rathe, formerly Head of Membership at LDHQ, posted this as his Facebook status on Tuesday, International Women’s Day. I thought it was worth reposting here, with his permission of course. .

So, guys, I’ve seen a couple of you post today asking why there isn’t an International Men’s Day*.

OK, I get it, it’s supposed to be about equality right? So why do we have something for women we don’t have for men?

I’ll explain why, but before we begin I’d like you to stop, look up from your desk (or other place of work) towards a female college. Don’t stare, but just imagine for a few moments that you’re not you, you’re that woman who you know, probably respect and hopefully care about.

Ok. So let’s go.

Now you’re a woman, your pay just got cut by 24%. Put that into pounds and pence and think how pissed off you are. You should be, it’s outrageous that because you just switched gender you’re getting paid less, but that’s what happens. And it adds up. Over your life as a woman you’re going to earn on average £300,000 less than you would have done as a man. Now we’re all proud of our penises, but I don’t think any of us would claim that it makes us 24% more productive at work. If yours does, please post tips in the comments.

Let’s head outside for a bit to calm down. Maybe a bit of shopping over lunch? Well, get ready for the double whammy, because not only do you have a lot less cash now, but you have to pay more for the same stuff. That’s right, on average the female versions of products (for example clothes) cost 7% more than the male ones. And of course, from now, your going to have to buy sanitary products once a month whether you like or not. And they’re a luxury, so you pay VAT on them as well. Lucky you.

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WATCH: Why we are #INtogether this International Women’s Day

Liberal Democrat women explain why women are better off in the EU

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Opinion: We must not be complacent!


Yesterday was International Women’s Day. We have a lot be proud of, but there is still a long way to go.

On Friday I spoke at a hustings organised by Youth Parliament. Afterwards, I had several young women come up, inspired and engaged with what I had to say. It was brilliant to see them keen on becoming politically active.

But as I left I was approached by two teenage lads, well-spoken, but of a completely different mindset. They asked me why women should be encouraged into politics because “it is a career which suits men.” I was aghast. I could not believe that attitude could exist among young people today. I am prepared for sexism from older generations, but my generation and those younger than me surely have been brought up in a world where men and women are equal?

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