As women, we refuse to calm down.
Women are oppressed but we are fighting back
I’m a local councillor so want to speak about
· the things I have campaigned on in the council
· the women I represent.
Local authorities are big public sector employers
– hit by the Coalition’s cuts
– northern cities hit harder than the Tory south.
2/3rd public sector workers are women – will be affected by the pay freeze
¾ million of these earn less than £15k pa.
Even these lowest paid will have to payer higher pension contributions
At national level, the Green Party would tax the rich to create jobs and
provide services – these cuts are a callous con trick!
In Sheffield City Council, the Greens would reduce the highest wages and
ensure all council workers have a living wage.
· Veolia running our waste collection
· Capita running financial services
· Kier running our buildings
· schools becoming academies
· roads will be maintained by Amey under the Highways PFI
· care homes are being closed and the money moved into the private
We must fight the cuts AND stop putting money into the hands of
I represent Central ward – the city centre, Broomhall, Sharrow – one of the
most deprived and diverse wards in the city.
Many women have:
· double whammy of poverty and English as a second language
· have come through traumatic situations
But like women everywhere, they are the ones
· making ends meet to heat their homes and feed their families
· care for children and elderly
So I have campaigned
· against cuts to Surestart
· for more youth work and homework clubs
· to expand the free insulation programme, cut by Labour and Lib Dems
· for investment and repairs on local housing estates
· to save ESOL teaching
So, in conclusion, I see women as
· workers, paid and unpaid
· guardians of our heritage (the elderly)
· guardians of our future (the young)
I can’t be calm when we are seen as sex objects.
I attended the Spearmint Rhino Licensing Hearing
– heard the arguments from men & women in the Cultural Industries
– saw the council’s press release in which the officer said
“unfortunately” they could not find a legal reason to turn it down.
But this decision was based on institutionalised sexism, because the
previous year, the same committee set the rules for “Sex Establishments” in
Sheffield. And could have decided how many such establishments were
acceptable. Women’s groups advised them to say “none”, but were ignored.
We must continue to fight for our rights
· for decent pay and pensions
· for decent public services
· to be treated as people – workers, carers, creators – not sex
We must never calm down!