Gender and Politics in the media

How Women Make Men Better at Work. UK: Clarke Calls For Full Veil Ban In Courts. Cameron backs Clarke on veils in court.

David Cameron backs Ken Clarke on veils in court
Evening Standard
David Cameron today backed Ken Clarke after the veteran cabinet minister said women should not be allowed to wear veils in court. A spokesman for the Prime Minister said there were also other occasions when public officials should be able to demand veils be removed.

Discussing the issue over the weekend Mr Clarke had said it was impossible to have a proper trial if someone involved was “in a kind of bag”.

Mr Cameron’s spokesman said today: “The central point Mr Clarke was making is about juries being able to look at someone’s face. “That is something that the Prime Minister agrees with.”

Ken Clarke Calls For Full Veil Ban In Courts Orange UK News Muslim women should be banned from wearing a veil while giving evidence in British courts, a senior Conservative MP has argued.

Ken Clarke likened traditional female Islamic dress to being “in a kind of bag” and said he found it “a most peculiar costume for people to adopt in the 21st century” during a BBC radio show.

He claimed his comments were not motivated by “Islamophobia”, but said he felt it was essential for the court to be able to see a witness’s body language.

The former Chancellor and Home Secretary said: “I don’t think a witness should be allowed to give evidence from behind a veil.

“I can’t see how on earth a judge and a jury can really appraise evidence when you’re facing someone who is cloaked and is completely invisible to you.

“It’s almost impossible to have a proper trial if one of the persons is in a kind of bag.”

Pregnancy bias at work ‘concerning’ Belfast Telegraph It is “very concerning” that women in modern society are discriminated against at work because they choose to have children, the head of the Equality and Human Rights Commission has said.

Mark Hammond said bias against pregnant women or those returning to work after maternity leave “needs to be tackled”.

Launching a new EHRC research project, Mr Hammond vowed to uncover the extent of the problem.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that some pregnant women experience prejudice while on maternity leave or on their return to work, an ECHR spokesman said.

The review will examine pregnancy and maternity discrimination in the workplace.

We don’t need special groups in Parliament The Observer (blog) This is the time to pose the question: has the continued representation of the special interest groups (workers, women, youth, people with disabilities and army) improved the lives of their constituents?

I don’t think so. Some groups are basically listening posts in Parliament.

For instance, the army’s representation is really inconsequential as, at times, they take partisan decisions. So, the earlier we liberated ourselves from the delusion that we have a non-partisan army, the better.

The workers’ representatives have occasionally turned themselves into firefighters. But even then, nothing of significance has been done for workers that wouldn’t be done by any ordinary MP.

The state is responsible for guaranteeing male-female equality … Times of India  Najat Vallaud-Belkacem is France’s minister for women’s rights and spokesperson for President Francois Hollande’s government. Visiting Delhi to initiate Indo-French dialogue on social matters, Vallaud-Belkacem spoke with Himanshi Dhawan about French experiences towards gender equality, punishing sexual crimes – and whether reservations are enough to ensure women sharing equal space in Parliament and corporate boardrooms:

Out of the shadows: the women who sparked the Labour movement The Guardian The received wisdom is that the heroic London dockers of 1889 led the way towards social justice, greater equality and spurred the foundation of the Labour movement.

In fact it was London’s working class women, a year earlier, who were the vital spark that lit the blaze that showed the way to trade unionism. The men learned how it was done from their mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and neighbours. It is a story, 125 years on, that needs to be told.

The Match Women’s strike of 1888, at the Bryant and May factory in Bow, is one I heard at my Mum’s knee and never forgot. It’s a story of tenacious bravery and of leadership that came from women within the impoverished, uneducated working-class, mainly Irish-immigrant communities of London’s East End.

Here’s How Women Make Men Better at Work Politix A study by researchers at the University of Minnesota finds that generosity at the workplace in the form of charity drives and the like is bolstered by a mixed workforce of men and women. Lead study author Lisa Leslie, a psychologist at the Univ. of Minnesota’s, looked at 487 administrative work units that included more than 16,000 people. Along with her colleagues, she noted that the presence of female coworkers upped the sense of goodwill among their male counterparts. “There was a spillover effect,” said Leslie to the Stanford Social Innovation Review. “There are positive synergies between diversity and corporate social responsibility.”

Labour conference: Goff, Mallard to feel pinch to resign New Zealand Herald Labour’s new rule to ensure at least half of its MPs are women by 2017 is likely to lead to increased pressure on males such as Phil Goff and Trevor Mallard to quit Parliament to make way for fresh male talent.

Under the rule, passed at the annual conference in Christchurch, Labour will seek to ensure at least 45 per cent of its caucus are females after the 2014 election, rising to 50 per cent after 2017 – meaning most of the new candidates likely to get high places on the party list or selection for safe electorate seats will be women.

That will mean the only way to get a significant intake of new male MPs is either by dumping some sitting male list MPs to unwinnable places on the list or pushing electorate MPs to retire from politics to open up more seats.

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