Fair Deal for Women: Power & Decision Making

Bring an end to women’s unequal representation in all areas, and set up an independent advisory body for women to feed into all areas of Government policy.

When there are decisions being made, and wherever power is wielded, women do not seem to be present. Women are under-represented in all aspects of power and decision making.

Politics

Only 22.6% of MP’s are women, 23.5% of peers, and 22.7% of the Cabinet are women. Since 2000 the number of women MP’s has increased by only 3.9% and the number of women MP’s in the cabinet has decreased.

All bar 27 of 650 MP’s are white, and only 10 of those are Black or ethnic minority women.

Nine Government Departments are female free zones, including: the Treasury, Ministry of Defence, and the Attorney General’s Office.

Business

Of FTSE 100 Company directors, only 23.6% are women and only 11% are UK bank CEO’s are women. Christine Lagarde, the Managing Director of the IMF, sad that “If Lehman Brothers had been Lehman Sisters, today’s economic crisis clearly would look quite different”. While this can’t be proven, we do think that more women in business would be a good thing!

Media

Only 14 of the 100 most powerful people in the media are women. Only 5% of editors are women, only 23% of reporters are women, and men outnumber women 4 to 1 as ‘experts’ on TV. This means that women’s ability to influence what we see and hear, and the way that women are represented is severely limited.

Legal institutions

Only 1 out of 12 Supreme Court Judges is a woman, and all 12 Supreme Court Judges are white, despite the population comprising of 51% women and 14% Black and ethnic minorities. The rest of the judicial system is comprised only 20% women.

What Women’s Charities do to address this issue

Women’s organisations lobby and provide information and research to tackle the lack of women’s participation and the imbalance of political power. They are working towards more representation and diversity in the forums where decisions are made, and trying to increase the number of women in leadership roles and as visible role models.)

What can Parliament do?
  1. Take action to increase women in politics
  2. Introduce and monitor mechanisms to remove the barriers preventing women from attaining positions of power and leadership