UK Policy Briefings
Briefing: Covid-19 – Gender and other Equality Issues
Date Posted: Thursday 19th March 2020
This briefing explains the specific challenges the Covid-19 crisis causes for different groups of women in the UK and, makes gender-responsive policy recommendations to the Government.
- Covid-19 is a global public health crisis and an economic crisis which impacts on different groups including women, BAME communities and disabled people, differently. Therefore, a response that takes into account different groups’ positioning in society and in the economy is necessary:
- The Government must support businesses to continue paying their staff if they cannot operate.
- Both eligibility for, and rate of, Statutory Sick Pay must increase.
- Universal Credit must be reformed to cope with increase in claimants as well as increasing rates of child benefit, carers’ allowance, parental leave payments and ESA/PIP payments.
- Local housing allowance must be restored to local rents as well as reintroducing full council tax rebates and opening more safe accommodation for homeless people.
- No recourse to public funds must end and migrant women must not be fearful of using the health service.
- The Government must recognise the risk of increased domestic abuse and increase funding to women’s organisations to be able to respond.