Published: Thu, February 08, 2018
Economy | By

Fund to encourage more women to enter politics 'a tribute to suffragettes'

Fund to encourage more women to enter politics 'a tribute to suffragettes'

This was, however, rejected by the Blair government who said it could only be possible if new evidence suggested the conviction was unsafe or if the crime had since ceased to exist. "So all of us who are feminists have to redouble our efforts to ensure we have gender equality", he said at an exhibition about the movement. Finland granted women the right to vote in 1906 and Norway in 1913. And "the old class feeling" was really as strong as ever within an establishment preparing for a new round of class warfare on the homefront.

Though numerous leadership were from upper and middle classes many working-class women found a place within the campaign.

It was not until 1969 that the voting system enabled people to vote over the age of 18.

Initially it only allowed women over the age of 30 the right to vote, but they had to have property rights or a university education.

A decade later in 1928, The Equal Franchise Act enabled women to vote on equal terms with men.

Indeed, that fear and loathing which the establishment felt towards the masses had always been shared by prominent supporters of female emancipation. Or that we've only had two female prime ministers in history? Mill conceded that they both had growing doubts about extending democracy because they "dreaded the ignorance and especially the selfishness and brutality of the mass". And so my Suffrage pilgrimage was ended... Abbott described her experience in The Guardian past year: "The Times had marked my selection by complaining about my 'rhetoric of class struggle and skin-colour consciousness.' Judging by the wariness with which I was treated when I entered the House of Commons, many MPs agreed with the Times".

It soon adopted the name Suffragettes as its own. Limited voting rights were gained by women in Finland, Iceland, Sweden in the 19th Century. Such a high percentage meant that the government only wanted women who were well into adulthood and who possessed a sufficient amount of property (read: wealth), social status, and/or education to be entrusted with the vote.

In the years that followed the act, legislation which affected women's equality and rights went through Parliament touching on everything from maternal and infant health, to divorce reform and employment.

Millicent Garrett Fawcett lead the The National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies (NUWSS), which was set up in 1897. While it's only right that the activism of women before us and the gains that they made are recognised, this is a reality that many celebrations have so far failed to grapple with. "But I have said that we will take a look at it", said Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

Answering questions after a speech in Manchester to mark 100 years since women won the right to vote, the PM said: "When I first became a member of Parliament, yes, there were only 13 Conservative women MPs".

Today we celebrate a century of women's suffrage in the UK. At less than £600 a month, in reality the system demands that women need a partner to support the family financially. "It was such a significant moment for women and this is the most interesting item for me because it is the real thing, it's what somebody, we don't know who for sure, would have been sent and had in their possession", he says.

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