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GMB Trade Union Activists Donate To Women In Crisis

Friday, September 30, 2016

GMB Trade Union Activists Donate Sanitary Products For Women In Crisis

New data reveals that over 70,000 women in the West Midlands are in poverty and have experienced violence

GMB’s Birmingham Organised Sisters Society launched their ‘Bleeding Insane’ campaign to highlight the need for free sanitary wear for vulnerable women on low incomes, receiving benefit, homeless or in need.  As part of their work, they’ve collected donations of sanitary products and will be presenting these to a women’s refuge in Stoke.

On Sunday 2nd October, the BOSS group will be joining thousands of other people on the ‘Austerity Has Failed’ march in Birmingham in response to the savage cuts that have blighted our frontline public services.

Sarah James GMB BOSS member said: 

“Over 70,000 women in the West Midlands are in poverty and have experienced violence. These women need care and support, but the fact is that the Tory government’s policies have effectively removed this.  The Tories have taken us back to the Victorian era, where the most vulnerable have to rely on hand-outs and charity.  We need to get out there and pound those pavements let the Tories and the rest of the country know this is just not acceptable.”

“A new report funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and compiled by women's advocacy group Agenda this week revealed the significant numbers of women in England who are in poverty and have experienced violence in their lives.

“A GMB analysis of these figures suggests this will include over 70,000 women affected in the West Midlands region alone. Among the recommendations in the report was that central and local government make sure specialist support services were adequately funded.”

Stuart Richards, GMB Senior Organiser, said:

“This is the real effect of austerity. GMB welcomes Agenda’s report that highlights the devastating impact of poverty and abuse on women and emphasises the clear link between the two.

“That women in poverty are twice as likely to experience virtually every kind of abuse as women not in poverty is shocking and underlines the clear need for women to have access to well-funded public support services.

“The impact of an austerity government is coming ever more into focus as our public services flag under the weight of cuts, the number of homeless people increases and more and more families slip into poverty.

“GMB is inviting everyone to join us at the protest on Sunday. We need to let this Government know that its austerity experiment has failed and that it’s time to put an end to it while we still can.”

Pauline O’Rourke, GMB BOSS member, said:

“I will be marching for all the women that can’t because they have died as a result of not having enough services available to get them to safety under this Tory Government.

“The ‘Austerity Has Failed’ march takes place during the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham. The protest will begin at 11.30 in Victoria Square in Central Birmingham.”

END

Contact: Stuart Richards on 07957 265774 or GMB press office at press.office@gmb.org.uk or on 07958 156846.

Notes to Editors

1 Agenda's 'Joining the Dots' report describes the circumstances of women in England who live in poverty, examines the nature and extent of violence and abuse experienced by women in poverty, and and the quality of life of women who experience both poverty and violence and abuse.

The report is available here with details of their methodology and conclusions: https://www.dropbox.com/s/7sn88kx0jt63yeo/Agenda_Joining%20The%20Dots%20Report_VFinal_d.pdf?dl=1

2 Agenda's studies reveal an incidence rate of women experiencing poverty and violence was 4% totally. According to the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics there are 1,789,300 women in the West Midlands region which assuming the same rate of incidence as the English average equates to 71,572 women affected in this region.

ONS data for the West Midlands available: https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/reports/lmp/gor/2013265925/report.aspx

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