Here at The Nopebook, we believe firmly in educating people about politics so that they can make free and informed political choices. This post is part of our Politics 101 series, where we aim to equip people with the information they need to make sound political decisions.
The Women’s Equality Party, often abbreviated to WE or WEP, is a feminist political party in the United Kingdom.
A Brief History
The WE party was founded by author Catherine Mayer and comedian/writer Sandi Toksvig in 2015, after concluding at that year’s Woman of the World Festival that the UK needed a political party to campaign for gender equality. The party was registered with the Electoral Commission in July 2015.
Sophie Walker was announced as the party’s first leader in July 2015, after she was appointed by a steering committee and was the unanimous choice. Previously a journalist, Walker will be standing in the 2017 general election in Shipley, seeking to oust ‘misogynistic’ current MP Philip Davies (Conservative).
The Women’s Equality Party’s key objectives centre around gender equality. They aim to;
- Create equal representation in parliament within two elections, concluding that “as a temporary measure, quotas will be necessary to drive substantial change”.
- Make equal work opportunities and pay a reality, for the benefit of all. The OECD has shown that if we “unleashed the true potential of women the economy could grow by an extra 10% by 2030 – adding an extra £180 billionto growth”.
- Achieve shared parenting and caregiving, making it easier for “employers to hold on to good staff, permit more women to take on decision making positions in business” and “enable more men to take part in childcare”.
- Focus on equal education for boys and girls, using “nurseries and schools as engine rooms for possibility, inspiring young women and men to achieve their full potential, free from gendered expectations about the life they should lead.”
- Campaign for equal media treatment for women, to “ensure our girls and boys grow up comfortable in themselves” and to make sure “women can be heard, and to make sure women get an equal chance to shape the way our society thinks”.
- End violence against women and girls, which is a “cause and consequence of gender inequality.” The party considers “denial of reproductive rights to women to be an act of violence and will always oppose any attempt to limit access to contraception, termination or medical support during pregnancy.”
- Campaign for “equality in healthcare and medical research” in order to ensure “better health outcomes and access and provision of treatment and support”.
Who They Appeal to
As the Women’s Equality Party was founded in 2015, there is no data on their voters for the last general election. On their party website, the WEP states that “Equality for women isn’t a women’s issue. When women fulfill their potential, everyone benefits. Equality means better politics, a more vibrant economy, a workforce that draws on the talents of the whole population and a society at ease with itself.”