Why us, why now

Why us, why now

Every day in the UK women face inequality at home, at work, in politics and in public life. That makes the UK a worse place to live for everybody.

Although women make up 51 per cent of the population, they are only 29 per cent of MPs, 25 per cent of judges and 24 per cent of FTSE 100 directors. This means that in politics, the law and in business, women's voices are not getting heard.

Women still occupy the lowest-paid jobs - three-quarters of the people who've done minimum wage jobs in the last 10 years are women. Working women earn 81p for every pound a man earns - and at the current rate it will be 70 years before that gap eventually closes.

Around 1.2 million women suffer domestic abuse a year and - every day - there are 250 rapes or attempted rapes. Conviction rates are low.

Women are represented in adverts and the media as sex objects and victims, rather than individuals with ambitions and ideas.

Our children are held back by the limits imposed on them by gender stereotypes.

There isn't a country in the world where women are equal - but WE can make the UK the first to prove it's possible, and will benefit everyone in the country, no matter their gender.

Unleashing women's full potential could add 10 per cent, or over £180 billion, to our GDP by 2030 if all the women that wanted to work did so. That's £2,850 for each and every one of us.

Helping more women into the workplace - by offering flexible working and support with childcare - is needed to make that happen. Big business is already leading the way with its recognition that greater diversity at the top of organisations improves the working environment, boosts productivity, creates efficiency savings and improves brand reputation.

Closing the gender pay gap would increase revenue from income tax and national insurance while reducing payments in tax credits. It would also boost women's spending power across the wider economy.

A more diverse House of Commons would make better decisions and solve problems more effectively, because it would be able to draw on a wider range of experiences when examining new laws. It would also build and restore public faith in Parliament that is crucial to the future of our democracy.

Our schools and universities would not only keep girls on the path to academic success, but play a significant role in challenging gender stereotypes - not least on the subjects they take - and in shaping the values and attitudes of all young people.

While we need the authorities to support victims of violence in rebuilding their lives, report crimes and make sure perpetrators are brought to justice, education could also help make sure sexual violence doesn't happen in the first place.

WE will set out the case for change. We will work together to finally bring an end to the injustices women still face and to unleash the enormous potential women offer, to the benefit of everybody.

WE will also show that equality is easier to get to than we think.

With our policies, we could have an equal parliament in just two elections. We could ensure every women fleeing abuse was safe and got justice. We could ensure every working women had access to childcare. We could ensure dads no longer felt stigmatised for looking after their children. We could ensure that every child grew up thinking gender equality is normal.

WE are not going to wait for equality, WE are going to make it happen - now.

Please join us on this journey.


Watch the the BSL translation of our mission statement and objectives here: