Brexit targets women
Brexit is set to hit British women the hardest. And those most affected will the poorest, including black and minority ethnic women, according to a report from the Women’s Budget Group and the Fawcett Society.
The study points out that:
Sectors like clothing and textiles with a majority female workforce are particularly vulnerable to increased trade barriers.
A downturn in GDP will likely result in further cuts to government spending on services. Women, who are more likely to work in the public sector and more likely to need public services, will be the worst affected.
Increased tariffs and a falling pound are likely to lead to increased food prices, which will hit the poorest families hardest.
A post-Brexit economic crisis could lead to the rolling back of workplace rights, including parental leave, equal treatment and rights for part time workers on which women rely in the name of increased ‘flexibility’ and ‘competitiveness’.
“This report clearly shows we risk turning the clock back on gender equality as a result of Brexit,” say Sam Smethers, CEO of the Fawcett Society. “In the context of any economic downturn the argument will be made that sacrificing employment rights and protections is justifiable to make some workers more employable.”