The Prime Minister David Cameron and the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg have just published this short text (the bold is mine):
“International Women’s Day is about reflecting on the strides that have been taken to give women more power, more choice and more control over their lives. But it is also about pushing for more to be done. Because the truth is, there is still a lot of work we need to do on the basics: ending violence against women and ensuring the physical security that is everyone’s fundamental right.
The UK already has some of the most robust protections against violence towards women in the world. But we know we’ve got to do better. So today we can confirm that we are working towards signing the Council of Europe’s Convention on Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence before ratifying the treaty and incorporating it into UK law.
This agreement is unprecedented, and it is vital. Across Europe millions of women suffer physical or sexual violence in their lifetimes. In the UK nearly one million women experience domestic abuse each year. This is an utter scandal – and together we are going to work harder than ever to bring this violence to an end.
The agreement is not just a piece of paper. It’s going to lift the standards of protection for women across Europe, give greater support for victims and – crucially – bring many more perpetrators to justice.
By signing the Convention we would ensure that British offenders who commit their crimes abroad would still face justice in our courts. This is what we do in cases of murder and paedophilia. We believe rapists and abusive men from the UK who seriously harm women should face the same fate – wherever they commit the offence. Our message must be loud and clear: there must be nowhere to hide.”
This is excellent news. Two observations only. First, the violence against primarily women which mainly ideologically driven cuts are generating here in the UK should not be underestimated:
WOMEN are being stung for £11.5billion by Coalition cuts at a time when the largest number are jobless for 23 years.
They are bearing more than two thirds of the £16billion Chancellor George Osborne is raking in from slashing welfare in his Budget and spending review.
The number of unemployed females currently stands at 1.07 million.
In the past 18 months ministers have axed the health in pregnancy grant, closed Sure Start centres, cut housing benefit, limited child benefit and slashed tax credits. Women are said to be deserting the Tories in droves.
Second, on an entirely separate matter, but relating to the sentence I highlighted in bold, when was the last time someone accused of infringing online copyright not abroad but in Britain itself required to go before a British court rather than a foreign one?
The statement on the occasion of International Women’s Day by our Lone Ranger Cameron and his sidekick Tonto Clegg is certainly welcome. It would, however, be far more welcome if it didn’t whiff a little of grandstanding to the gallery.
Deeds, please, gentlemen and ladies, not words are needed now.