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Women’s equality: Labour looks at the next step

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Jeremy Corbyn Dawn Butler, women's votes, women's equality, #TheNextStepOne hundred years later the struggle for equality continues.

Jeremy Corbyn has marked the centenary of women’s suffrage by staging a special meeting of the shadow cabinet at the Museum of London as he launched #TheNextStep, Labour’s year-long campaign for women’s equality.

Corbyn, Dawn Butler and other shadow cabinet members aim to meet with women’s groups across Britain over the next few months to look at #TheNextStep needed to achieve equality for women.

They will then present a series of policies dealing with gender inequality at Labour’s Women’s Conference later this year.

So far the party has determined that the next Labour government will end austerity, tackle the gender pay gap, #EndPeriodPoverty, extend free childcare provision, and audit all government policy for their impact on women.

It will provide stable funding for women’s refuges and rape crisis centres and appoint a new commissioner to tackle domestic and sexual violence.

And it will also introduce a real living wage of £10 per hour – 60 per cent of those currently earning less than the real living wage are women.

Two of the other things Labour is calling for are for the government to publish comprehensive equality impact assessments on their budgets which have seen 86 per cent of cuts affect women #PublishTheImpact; and for the government to #BringBackSec40 of the Equality Act, to guarantee protections for employees against harassment from third parties.

Speaking at the Museum of London, Corbyn said: “One hundred years ago today an important milestone was achieved in the fight for women’s equality,”

“It was far from perfect, but the Representation of the People Act meant for the first time in our country’s history, some women had the right to vote. A decade later universal suffrage was extended to all women.

“One hundred years later,” he continued, “the struggle for equality continues.

“There are still too few women in parliament, women still do not receive equal pay for equal work and many face discrimination in the workplace and in everyday life.”

And while Labour MPs are taking the next step in parliament, Labour needs you to take the next step too: on the ground, at home and online. For more information about what you can do, click here.

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