We are proud to announce a three year partnership with the Fawcett Society, Muslim Women's Network, The Parliament Project, Centenary Action Group, and 50:50 Parliament, in order to support women's participation across our membership and in public life, named Equal Power. Funded by Comic Relief, this is a ground breaking campaign to get more women as leaders in public life, both as elected as MPs and local councillors, and as civil society leaders, and to tear down the barriers that stop women voices from being heard at every level of politics including as civil society leaders who will build campaigns to make change.
270 Citizens UK women members - across London, the West Midlands and Greater Manchester in the first year - will be trained and supported to take on new roles in public life. As a project across all five organisations, Equal Power will engage with over 4,500 women. Our members will have access to the following support:
- Equal Power training will give women the skills and knowledge to stand for election while peer support circles and mentoring will build aspiring leaders’ confidence
- Citizens UK will specifically focus on Community Organising training, to help women build power to use their voices and make change on issues they care about both locally and nationally.
- Targeted ‘become a candidate’ sessions for BAME women are being run by Muslim Women’s Network UK, and will help BAME women, who are underrepresented in positions of power across society and face additional discrimination, stand for election.
When this election was called, a worrying number of women MP’s announced that they would not be standing for re-election citing abuse, harassment and threats of violence and rape as a key reason for this. For BAME women politicians, including Jewish women, threats and harassment have been at even higher levels. Citizens UK has long worked on issues that affect women's ability to participate in public life - our work to make misogyny a hate crime has helped scope the scale of violence directed at women for being women, and 62% of workers earning below the real Living Wage are female. With this grant, we look forward to increasing our capacity to train and support women to take more roles as civil society leaders.
Find out about how you can access training and support to develop as a woman leader in public life through Community Organising: