A hundred years after property-owning women over the age of 30 won the vote in the UK, the Traveller Movement celebrated the lives of influential Gypsy, Roma and Traveller women at a roundtable in parliament on the 8th March, kindly hosted by Baroness Young of Hornsey.
Speakers at the event included Travellers’ Times’ Lisa Smith, English Gypsy and Roma mediator, Sybil Lee, and Irish academic and activist, Sindy Joyce.
Our Women’s Empowerment Network (WEN), first launched on International Women’s Day in 2017, had been very busy in the run up to the event with capacity building training focusing on Public Sector Equality Duty, political advocacy and campaigning and presentation skills. At the event in parliament last week the women launched a new gender equality campaign called Travelling2Equality.
With support from The Traveller Movement the WEN are calling on the UK Government to implement targeted provision to increase employability of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller women who for too long been overlooked or ignored in provision. To advance gender equality, GRT women must have access to education, services and to the labour market. In the coming months, the WEN will work toward the campaign objectives through community engagement and a range of workshops, as well as other initiatives. Exiting times ahead. Watch this space!