European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless report: Third Overview of Housing Exclusion in Europe 2018

European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless logo

The profiles of homeless people are changing, with children becoming the largest group of people in emergency shelters as a result of a deterioration in the living conditions of extremely vulnerable families.

This from the March 2018 annual report (PDF) from the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless (FEANTSA)

This report reveals how millions of Europeans face housing exclusion on a daily basis as well as a dramatic picture of increasing homelessness across most of the EU – in particular amongst children, women and migrants.

The report finds:

In France, 20,845 people called the 115 homeless helpline requesting accommodation (in June 2017)
Dublin City Council spent € 39 million on hotel nights for homeless people in 2016, while € 10.7 million was spent on prevention and supported housing
In Britain, 29% of spending was on temporary accommodation and (44% of which was spent on hotels/Bed and Breakfast) and 61% on housing services (between 2015-2016)
Over the last number of years, only two European countries (Finland and Norway) have seen a reduction in the number of homeless people
Read the full report (PDF).

Fawcett Society and Living Wage Foundation research: No Safety Net for UK’s Worst Paid Women

Fawcett society logo

‘Millions of working women face financial insecurity’, says the March 2018 research from the Living Wage Foundation and Fawcett Society.

A poll of women earning below the real Living Wage revealed that:

A third (33% or 1.12 million women) have no savings at all, including pensions
39% have more than £500 of debt, while 31% have more than £1,000 of debt
94% worry about their financial situation.
Access the full research.

Equality and Human Rights Commission report: The Cumulative Impact of Tax and Welfare Reforms

‘The impact of changes to direct taxes and benefits is to reduce the income of
Bangladeshi households by around £4,400 per year on average’.

Four months after releasing their 2017 interim report, the Equality and Human Rights Commission have published their final cumulative impact assessment (pdf), in March 2018.

The report exposes how much individuals and households are expected to gain or lose, and how many adults and children will fall below an adequate standard of living, as a result of recent changes to taxes and social security.

The report finds:

Negative impacts are particularly large for households with more disabled members, and individuals with more severe disabilities, as well as for lone parents on low incomes
For some family types, these losses represent over 13% of average net income
At an individual level, women lose on average considerably more from changes to direct taxes and benefits than men
Lone parents in the bottom fifth of the household income distribution lose around 25% of their net income, on average
Around 1.5 million more children are forecast to be living in households below the relative poverty line as a result of the reforms.
EDF and a number of our members have contributed to the development of this important research.

Read the full report (pdf).

Institute for Fiscal Studies briefing: Poverty and Low Pay in the UK

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57% of people in poverty are children or working-age adults living in a household where someone is in paid work.  

This is according to a March 2018 briefing from the Institute for Fiscal Studies on poverty and low pay in the UK. 

The briefing finds:

Low pay is highly related to lack of pay progression. The wages of the low- and high- educated, and of men and women, end up much further apart by age 40 than they were at the start of their careers
Experience and education are both positively associated with higher wages, but the association with experience is much stronger for the high-educated than the low-educated
The fact that women’s wages fall behind their male counterparts over the lifecycle is, in part, related to a remarkable lack of wage progression in part-time work.
Read the full briefing.

Equality and Human Rights Commission survey report and campaign: Moving Forward

6 in 10 employers agree that a woman should have to disclose whether she is pregnant during the recruitment process.

This is according to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) who have published the results of their survey on maternity discrimination in the workplace, in February 2018.

The aim of the survey was to understand managers’ attitudes around pregnancy and maternity discrimination.

Findings from the survey include:

44% of employers agree that women should work for an organisation for at least a year before deciding to have children
40% of employers claim to have seen at least one pregnant woman in their workplace ‘take advantage’ of their pregnancy
41% employers agreed that pregnancy in the workplace puts ‘an unnecessary cost burden’ on the workplace.
EHRC have also launched a February 2018 campaign to combat these negative perceptions and end discrimination against new parents. Working Forward asks businesses to join the campaign and make the pledge.

Read the research report.

Find out on the Working Forward campaign.

Scottish Human Rights Commission report: Building a Human Rights Culture in Scotland

The Scottish Human Rights Commission logo.

Human rights belong to everyone. We all have rights regardless of sex, race, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age, income, gender, country of birth or belief.

This is from the February 2018 report from the Scottish Human Rights Commission on building a human rights culture in Scotland.

The research tested and identified the impact of different types of messages on people’s attitudes towards human rights

The report finds:

Demographic groups of women and 16-24 year olds were most likely to become more supportive and engaged with human rights when exposed to key human rights messages
When talking about human rights, organisations involved in human rights secured the greatest levels of trust amongst all those surveyed, with 58% of participants saying they would trust them a great deal or fair amount.
This compares to 17% for a famous singer, actor, sportsperson or musician who is well known for caring about human rights
Different spokespeople affected the impact of messages. For example across all those surveyed, a disability rights campaigner has more impact than the Chair of the National Human Rights Institution when discussing disability rights.
Read the full report (pdf).

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights report: Migration to the European Union – Five Persistent Challenges

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA)

‘Asylum-seeking children in several EU Member States had no or limited access to education’, says a February 2019 report (pdf) from the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA).

Building on the findings of their October 2016 report (pdf), this report presents the most pressing fundamental rights concerns between October 2016 and December 2017.

The report finds:

Legal and practical obstacles to accessing legal aid, information and interpretation existed in all EU Member States covered
Sexual and gender-based violence in reception centres remains an issue in some EU Member States
Police and border guards reportedly ill-treated migrants, particularly on the Western Balkan route, and in Spain in certain locations.
Read the full report (pdf).

Institute for Fiscal Studies report: Wage Progression and the Gender Wage Gap – the Causal Impact of Hours of Work

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The hourly wages of female employees are currently about 20% lower than men’s on average, having been 23% lower in 2003 and 28% lower in 1993.

This is from the February 2018 report (pdf) from the Institute for Fiscal Studies on the gender wage gap.

The report finds: 

The gender wage gap widens gradually but significantly from the late 20s and early 30s
Gender differences in rates of part-time and full-time paid work account for approximately half of the widening of the gender wage gap over the 20 years after the first child in a family is born
There is, on average, a wage gap of around 10% even shortly before the arrival of the first child.
Read the full report (pdf).

Women and Equalities Committee inquiry: Sexual harassment in the workplace

The House of Commons logo.

‘More than 40% of women and more than 18% of men have experienced some form of unwanted sexual behaviour in the workplace’, says the Women and Equalities Committee (WEC). 

WEC have launched a full  February 2018 inquiry on sexual harassment in the workplace and they are inviting submissions of written evidence.

This inquiry will sit alongside their related inquiry on the Sexual harassment of women and girls in public places.

WEC are inviting written evidence specifically on:

How widespread sexual harassment in the workplace is, and whether this has increased or decreased over time
Who experiences sexual harassment in the workplace, who perpetrates it and what the impact is on different groups
Actions that the Government and employers should be taking to change workplace culture to prevent sexual harassment, give people more confidence to report sexual harassment, and make this issue a higher priority for employers
How workers can be better protected from sexual harassment by clients, customers and other third parties
The effectiveness and accessibility of tribunals and other legal means of redress and what can be done to improve those processes
the advantages and disadvantages of using non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment cases, including how inappropriate use of such agreements might be tackled.
Find out more on the WEC website.