Women and The Recovery : A figure, not a feel-good factor
26 August 2014
The Fawcett Society has just launched its 2015 General Election campaign.
Its early launch underlines several important aspects of women’s lives and how they could well impinge on their voting preferences next year.
Women, of course, cannot be as one unitary group with the same needs.
Demographics and everyday experience show the differences between older women’s caring needs and younger women’s needs as mothers and workers facing the prospects of insecure employment.
However, the following facts and points receive broad agreement :
Women form the majority of the electorate.
Women tend to favour spending rather than cutting spending on public services such as health, education , social services, housing .
Women are more likely than men :
to be in part-time jobs
to work in low paid jobs
to face obstacles such as childcare which directly influence their choice of employment.
to work in low-status jobs.
to be the primary care providers in families.
Women, particularly those who have experienced reductions in benefits, in hours of work , in the provision of public services and in the availability of quality jobs, will regard the Coalition’s recovery in the economy as having passed them by.
Under-employment, zero-hours contracts, the rise in the ranks of the self-employed have all combined to produce fewer hours of work which results in less pay, and grappling still further with family budgets to meet increasing bills.
These are the characteristics of a cost-of-living crisis, not of a recovery.
That is why we need measures such as strengthening the Minimum Wage, maximising the benefits of the Living Wage, putting a stop to the abuse of zero-hour contracts, expanding child care.
That is why we need to reform the banks.
That is why we need to reform the monopoly energy market with the benefit for consumers and businesses of a price freeze.
We need people on lower and middle earnings to see that the growth in the economy is correspondingly reflected in the increase in their earnings.
This is why with wages struggling to match the rise in prices at present, for many women the Tory-led Coalition’s recovery remains a figure, not a feel-good factor.
click on the image below to visit the campaign page
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