**The 92nd Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC) Women’s Conference will take place in the Perth Concert Hall on Monday 28th & Tuesday 29th October 2019. **
The Conference brings together over 120 women trade unionists from workplaces across Scotland to debate a wide range of issues and set their campaigning agenda for the next year.
Due to the impact of austerity causing rising levels of poverty in the country, particularly for families, the theme of this year’s conference is “Fighting to Eradicate Child Poverty”.
The Education Institute of Scotland (EIS) will move a motion highlighting the impact of poverty on children’s educations. The motion calls on the STUC Women’s Committee and STUC General Council to support continued campaigning and lobbying for universal free school and nursery meal provision and the elimination of all cost barriers so that all young people can participate and benefit equally from their education.
GMB Scotland will move a motion calling for more action to be taken on school holiday hunger. The GMB commends a number of Scottish councils who have already stepped in to provide universal holiday meal schemes, but stresses that funding needs to come from central government to alleviate the issues whilst still protecting other vital council services.
Both the Union of Shop, Distributive & Allied Workers (USDAW) and the STUC Women’s Committee will each discuss the gendered nature of poverty in Scotland, highlighting the gender pay gap as a key contributor to this. They will each move motions seeking to work with the STUC General Council to lobby the Scottish and UK Government to tackle gender inequality.
Conference will also debate motions on decriminalising abortion, supporting menopausal women in the workplace and the increasing use of split shifts in social care.
Speaking ahead of Conference, this year’s Chair, Joyce Stevenson from the Communication Workers Union, said:
“I am deeply honoured and humbled to be the Chair of the 92nd STUC Women’s Conference in the Fair City of Perth. This Women’s Conference will have Child Poverty at its heart. In a society where the Scottish Government’s own figures show child poverty is on the increase, the STUC Women’s Committee through the motions carried at this conference will continue to work to eradicate child poverty. “Only when we lift women out of poverty will we begin to see an improvement in the fight to end child poverty.”
Notes to editors: Speakers to conference include: Grahame Smith, STUC General Secretary Mary Senior, STUC Vice-President Rachel Weiss, Chairperson, Perth Menopause Café Ruth Devlin, Let’s Talk Menopause Kirsty McKechnie, Child Poverty Action Group Erin McAuley, Young Activist / Teacher Tam Kirby, Chair, Fife Trades Union Council A programme outlining speakers and times and an agenda setting out the motions being considered is available here. For further information and/or media passes, please contact Rachel Thomson, Campaigns & Communications Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org/07974966227.