Last month I was delighted to be invited to present at Unison Women’s Conference in
Southport on behalf of the Women’s Budget Group. Last year I also presented at the Local Government Conference and there was a lot of enthusiasm for my analysis of local government spending and the impact on gender equality. I also gave a similar talk to the Essex Feminist Collective who were the ones who recommended me to speak at Unison.
It was a fascinating morning as the caucus passed motions. Much to my delight
one of these motions was a call to continue to work closely with the Women’s Budget Group on the ongoing impacts of austerity on women, which was an
excellent start to the day.
In the afternoon I was presenting in the main conference hall which was slightly terrifying. We first looked at some of the problems with economic theory which is predicated on the household male-breadwinner model and does not have any means for understanding how resources are split within the household. Secondly there is a total failure by mainstream economics to take into account the impact of unpaid care work. We then moved to local government and looked at equality impact assessments. These can be quite dry but they are a good tool to show how the basics of gender budget analysis works.
It was a fantastic day and I am looking forward to working with Unison more closely this year.