Sally Carr MBE, Manchester Withington
It is a pleasure to have met so many enthusiastic and impassioned people in my journey around our wonderful constituency.
This is the constituency that took me in as a young LGBT person fleeing form discrimination and prejudice.
The place I made my home for over 20 years, and where I have worked for 30 years supporting some of the most marginalised young people and adults in our communities.
It saddens me to know that each week a female student is sexually assaulted in our constituency, and because of the cuts and overcrowding in Withington that women trying to escape from the horror of domestic abuse are often prevented from doing so because of the lack of safe places to escape to. Consequently they are held hostage, forced to return to violent homes to face more slaps, kicks, scalding, control, assault and rape.
This is why our policies are so important. They are based on real life, on women's stories, on a narrative that really needs to change, so that all genders feel safe, valued and able to to take up the joys and challenges of life free from the oppressive forces of sexism, racism, homophobia, misogyny and poverty.
Thank you to all you "bad women" for your support over the previous weeks, your work, determination and drive has been inspirational,. Although some steps towards change have taken place in our lifetimes, we risk them now stagnating and, worse still, being reversed. So we need to ensure that these foot-steps become foot-prints, and that our polices provide the blue prints for change.
Never be put off by the hurtful comments, the dismissive looks and the tactics that they use to try to silence us. You have all been the brave women who have laid the path so that our sisters of all backgrounds and heritage can feel safe to follow and lead.
In the Local and General Elections of the future we will stand again; we are here until change happens and we will be relentless in ensuring it happens.
"Equal Rights, Equal Pay, Women's Equality, OK!"
For enquiries about this campaign, please contact [email protected].
Harini Iyengar, Vauxhall
Harini Iyengar grew up in Manchester, where her immigrant parents were both NHS doctors.
She went to Manchester High School for Girls, where all the Pankhurst daughters were educated, as was WEP co-founder Catherine Mayer.
She studied at Oxford University before moving to London, where she was called to the Bar in 1999.
She is ranked as a leading barrister in Employment, Equality and Education, gave expert legal evidence to the House of Commons Inquiry into high heels and workplace dress codes, and has been described by the Times as "a leading campaigner for diversity in the legal profession".
She works full-time and raises three children as their lone parent. Harini stood for the Women's Equality Party in the Greater London Assembly elections in May 2016, and at their first party conference in November 2016 she was elected to Policy Committee as Spokesperson on Equal Representation.
Sharon Lovell, Vale of Glamorgan
Sharon was born in Wales and raised, along with her two siblings, by her working mum.
She was the first woman in her family to go to university and gain a degree. She is passionate about empowering women to have opportunities and access to help shape the future of Wales.
Having lived and worked in Wales all her life, she is now Director for Nyas, a UK charity providing information, advice, advocacy and legal representation to children, young people and vulnerable adults.
Sharon, who lives in the Vale of Glamorgan, stood for the Women's Equality Party in the Welsh Assembly elections in May 2016.
Kirstein Rummery, Stirling
Long term Stirling resident Kirstein is Professor of Social Policy at Stirling University, and a founder member and the Scottish Policy Spokesperson of the Women’s Equality Party.
Kirstein has a background in health and social care, international social policy, disability issues and gender equality. She advises the UK and Scottish Governments on health and social care policy, and was the Chair of the Social Work Appeals Panel in Stirling.
Kirstein is married with 3 children, one of whom is autistic. She is a keen dancer, singer, and amateur chocolate taster.
She is standing for Stirling because as a carer, disabled woman, mother and academic, she knows how important the Women’s Equality Party’s aims are to the constituency and to the whole country.
Celine Thomas, Tunbridge Wells
Celine has worked as a lawyer in central government for nine years, initially training in a city firm as an EU and regulatory lawyer. She qualified as a teacher of law and politics in her early career and taught briefly in further education before returning to legal practice.
She lives in Tunbridge Wells with her family of three children. Celine volunteers as a support worker for a local charity supporting women affected by domestic violence and has also been involved with supporting local refugee groups
She has always been a passionate advocate for women both in her community and at work and this year became one of the first ever candidates to stand in a local election for the Women’s Equality Party.