Does Local Government Work for Women?

Screen Shot 2018-01-05 at 22.47.17It was fantastic to be involved in the project during my time at Fawcett and I am so pleased to see it published. It is an incredible in depth report looking at women in local government from councillors to staff. It is such an in depth piece of work.

Click here to read the the results of a year-long study led by the Fawcett Society in partnership with the Local Government Information Unit, which asked ‘Does Local Government Work for Women?’ and contains recommendations to help solve the issues faced by women in town halls.

 

More councillors being sexist!

polly guardian

The report I wrote for the Fawcett Society really took off. I had my first appearance on Woman’s Hour, which for a professional feminist is about as good as it gets.

It also appeared in the Sunday Times,The ArgusThe GuardianThe Yorkshire Post and The Belfast Telegraph and the Metro.

You can read a copy of the report here.

Colchester UKIP candidate Sarah Hardy answers questions on women’s rights

As part of my work for the Fawcett Society I have recently launched a campaign called #Vote4Equality. This campaign aims to engage people in their local elections and council candidate’s answers on how they will improve women’s rights in their local area. You can find out how to get involved in the campaign here or join the conversation on twitter here.

It provides the public with 10 questions to ask their local council candidate. Given it’s my own campaign I figured I should get on it. The first candidate to respond was Sarah Hardy, UKIP council candidate for Colchester.

If elected, will you do an equality impact assessment of all local budget cuts on women? #vote4equality

ukip

R: If the facility or opportunity is available to me, as your councillor, I would always assess the impact on women of budget cuts before I am called to vote on any issue at committee or council level.

If elected, will you defend specialist, women-only services e.g. rape crisis centres and refuges from cuts? #vote4equality

R: I will always defend such services from cuts, I believe these services are extremely important and should be funded appropriately.

If elected, how will you improve representation of women on your council? #vote4equality

R: I can only have an impact on such improvements if we have sufficient elected women councillors to increase representation.

If elected, what will you do re-open Sure Start Centres that have closed and defend the ones that already exist? #vote4equality

R: I would have to research the present position of Sure Start Centres at local level but I do believe they are a vital community resource.

If elected, how will you ensure women benefit from local strategic/economic/enterprise partnership funding? #vote4equality

R: Again, I would have to research the present position to ascertain what improvements are required at local level.

If elected how will you ensure the council and businesses in your local area become living wage employers? #vote4equality

R: I do not currently know what influence I would have on businesses to achieve compliance with a living wage, but I would research the current situation to enable me to understand what influence I would have with this issue.

If elected, will you undertake a gender pay audit in your council? #vote4equality

R: If my election to Council enables me to carry out such an undertaking I will certainly carry it out.

If elected, how will you improve council engagement with local women and women’s organisations? #vote4equality

R: This would depend on what position I am appointed to, but I would certainly champion such causes.

If elected, what will you do to tackle sexism and sex discrimination in your council? #vote4equality

If there are not such mechanisms to deal with sexism and sex discrimination, or any discrimination, already in place, then I would do my best to ensure that they are implemented.