Women

Assembly reinforces International Women’s Day message

08 March 2017

There are over four million women and girls in London who still face specific challenges with employment, poverty, discrimination and safety. Women are vulnerable to poverty, partly as a result of the gender pay gap and unequal caring responsibilities.

The London Assembly today agreed a motion calling on the Mayor to ensure London’s businesses; Transport for London (TfL) and the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are free from any type of prejudice towards women.

They also stressed the urgency of adopting equal rights regarding women’s access to work, equal pay and caring responsibilities.

Jennette Arnold AM, who proposed the motion said:

“It is vital to use International Women’s Day to raise awareness of the gender inequality that still exists in 2017

It is astonishing that the World Economic Forum predicts that the gender pay gap will not close until 2186. We must also remember that in our city, three in four victims of domestic violence, and almost nine in ten victims of sexual offences, are female

This motion highlights the need for all Londoners to see International Women’s Day as a call to action. It is a joy to have a proud feminist as Mayor of London, but only by working together can we create a city where economic and social barriers are removed, ensuring all Londoners can prosper regardless of their gender.”

Caroline Russell AM, who seconded the motion said:

“It’s great that today we are celebrating international women’s day – I’m glad the Assembly recognised the particular challenges faced by women in London and around the world.



Austerity cuts, poor working conditions and low pay hit women particularly hard and II welcome the call to challenge stereotypes and work towards ending the gender pay gap to allow all women to prosper



I also support the Mayor’s moves to remove misogynistic and objectifying adverts from the TfL public transport network that do so much to harm equality.”

The full text of the Motion is:

“This Assembly celebrates International Women’s Day on the 8th March, to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and as a call to action for accelerating gender equality

This Assembly notes that there are over four million women and girls in London who still face specific challenges with regards to employment, poverty, discrimination and safety. Women are vulnerable to poverty, partly as a result of the gender pay gap and unequal caring responsibilities

Women are less likely to be employed and on average earn less than men with the gender pay gap in London currently 11.9 per cent. Analysis by Trust for London in 2016 showed the biggest group among the low paid were the 220,000 female part-time employees who make up, 31 per cent of the total. Of the low paid jobs in London, 58 per cent are carried out by women. A recent report by the London Assembly Economy Committee found that gender stereotypes remain strong in apprenticeships and that no women undertook a higher level apprenticeship in either construction or engineering in 2015/16

This Assembly recognises that violence against women and girls remains an important issue for many Londoners and includes physical, sexual and psychological/emotional violence, economic abuse and sexual exploitation. In the year to September 2016 there were over 151,000 recorded domestic offences in London, of which three in four victims were female. During the same time period, there were 17,148 reported sexual offences, of which almost nine in ten victims of sexual offences were female

This Assembly welcomes the Mayor’s pledge to be a proud feminist in City Hall and calls on the Mayor to celebrate International Women’s Day and the achievements of London’s women and girls

This Assembly calls on the Mayor to work with London’s businesses, Transport for London (TfL) and the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to ensure that London is a city in which women are safe from violence and sexual harassment; and to challenge stereotypes and work towards ensuring that economic barriers are removed to allow all Londoners to prosper equally, regardless of gender.”

Notes to editors

  1. Watch the full webcast.
  2. The motion was unanimously agreed.
  3. Jennette Arnold AM, who proposed the motion, is available for interviews. Please see contact details below. 
  4. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.

For media enquiries, please contact Sonia Labboun on 020 7983 5769.  For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officerNon-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100.