Lancashire Times
Weekend Edition
12:00 AM 1st July 2024

85% Of UK Women Demand Domestic Abuse Services Funding Answers From Government

Women’s charity, Soroptimist International Great Britain & Ireland (SIGBI), has conducted a survey revealing the key topics women feel are most important for MPs to address ahead of the UK’s General Election on Thursday 4 July.

Of the 482 women surveyed – all SIGBI members – 85% feel one of the top three most pressing questions is: ‘How will your government ensure that domestic abuse services for women and children are properly funded?’

According to ONS data, 2.1 million people – 1.4 million of whom were women – experienced domestic abuse in the year ending March 2023.

The other areas Soroptimists placed in their top three topics for government attention were:

How the Government will develop a women’s health strategy (65%).
How the Government will ensure the efforts of volunteers, charities, and civic society are valued and maintained (43%).
How the Government will ensure more girls are involved in the tech sector (41%).

A quarter (25%) of respondents cited the development of a women’s health strategy as their top concern.

Commenting on the results, Ruth Healey, President of SIGBI, said:
“While women make up 51% of the UK electorate, they only make up 35% of members of the House of Commons.
“There is nowhere near enough parliamentary representation, and this needs to change.

“Having more females in government is crucial, as this helps to ensure that legislation and policies are inclusive of women and girls’ needs and concerns.

“And in order to secure women’s votes, politicians will need to clearly communicate how they aim to address the challenges facing the 51%, and how the lives of women and girls are at the heart of their policies.”

In 2022, the BMA reported that the UK has the widest gender health gap in the G20. And while women make up 50% of the UK workforce, only 24% of tech roles are occupied by women.

Ruth continued:
“Domestic abuse services, women’s health strategy development, and involving more girls in tech are all women-specific issues needing more focus and funding from the Government.

“The catalogue of stark statistics and our survey results combined clearly show more attention is needed in these areas and that women across the country want, and deserve, answers from MPs.”

Founded in 1921, SIGBI is a registered charity born out of the service movement. The charity has consultancy status at the United Nations, focuses on empowering women and girls to achieve their full potential and works to eliminate barriers and discriminations that hinder women’s progress.

It has 248 clubs throughout the UK, Malta, Asia and the Caribbean – over 200 of which are in the UK – and has a total of 5,150 members.