Fawcett release on the Autumn Statement 2016

Sam Smethers, Chief Executive of the Fawcett Society said:

“The Autumn Statement 2016 is disappointing and represents a missed opportunity for women and for the economy.

“The Chancellor could and should have included investment in our childcare and social care infrastructure in his infrastructure spending plans.  This would help to grow the economy, support low paid workers and families struggling to cope with balancing work and care.  Childcare and social care are as important and as fundamental to our ability to work as roads and rail.

“The reduction in the Universal Credit taper rate from 65% to 63% is welcome but not enough for those living on the lowest incomes. Similarly the increase in the National Living Wage benefits women disproportionately as most of the lowest earners are women.  But these are small gains when what we needed were more ambitious strides.”

“The Chancellor is spending £23 billion on closing the productivity gap. But if we improve gender equality in the workplace we would make productivity gains of £150 billion by 2025.”

“£3 million from the tampon tax is nowhere near enough for women’s services and women shouldn’t be paying for their own safety.”

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