As Theresa May pledges to bring a decade of austerity to a close, it comes too late for the 6 in 10 women who were turned away from refuges last year, following funding cuts to domestic violence services. Increased waiting lists have left women facing a terrible decision: sleep rough, or return home to violent partners.
So what does Brexit mean for the 1.2 million women throughout England and Wales who will likely experience domestic abuse this year? What changes, both good and bad, can we expect?
Stacey Lamb, the Growth and Operations Officer at Just Fair, contributes this blog on the implications of Brexit on domestic abuse for the Gendering Brexit Blog series.
Brexit is a critical moment in which gender relations are being reshaped. An article on women, equality and the EU referendum by Julie MacLeavy, University of Bristol, published in July 2018 emphasizes the risks of Brexit for both women and gender equality.
The Government has published a white paper on the future relationship between the UK and the European Union on 12 July 2018 which proposes a ‘principled and practical’ Brexit.
Brexit will not necessarily dismantle women’s rights, but it does threaten women’s groups that get funding and shared expertise from the EU. This is according to Alice Chilcott from Gender 5+ in a May 2017 article for the LSE Brexit blog.
‘EU and EEA migrants living in Northern Ireland are facing high levels of fear and uncertainty around their status and rights in the aftermath of Brexit’.
This is according to the January 2018 report (pdf) from the Human Rights Consortium on the human rights implications of Brexit in Northern Ireland.
Decoupling from the EU’s equality framework due to Brexit will harm the pursuit of gender equality in the UK. This is according to a December 2017 article by Colette Fagan and Jill Rubery in Social Policy and Society on gender equality and Brexit.
The Women and Equalities Select Committee published a report on ensuring strong equalities legislation after Brexit in February 2017, after an earlier inquiry. Our Chief Executive, Ali Harris, said “We welcome the four positive recommendations made by the committee which seek to embed equality into the UK legislative and policy framework, specifically aided by civil society organisations.”
In January 2017, the Scottish Women’s Convention (SWC) organised a conference following discussions from women throughout the country, who have expressed concerns about Scotland’s place in the negotiations on the UK leaving.
In August 2016, Compass published an article on the gendered cost of Brexit.
The Women’s Budget Group have collated members’ analysis of Brexit and its potential impact on British women.