"As Conservative MPs, we care passionately about the equal advancement of women, in both the political and the economic sense.
Women still lag behind men in both areas in Britain in the 21st Century. Far more women than men live in workless households. They own 17% less than men. Their incomes are 17% lower than men's in similar jobs. They are more likely to be in low paid work. They start businesses at half the rate men do. They have 14% less to live on in retirement and are relatively more dependent on means-tested benefits. Under Labour, far too many became trapped in 16 hour a week jobs, missing out on career progression. This is a scandal we plan to change.
With welfare reform, pensions reform, shared parental leave, financial support for part-time students, tax reform to lift hundreds of thousands of women out of income tax altogether and protection for the 80% female workforce which is the lowest paid during the public sector pay freeze, we aim to make working and saving pay for all the women of this country. Furthermore, under the Universal Credit, help with child care will start from the first hour of work.
In other important ways, this government has taken action. New rape crisis centres have opened; more money is being spent on women-focused international aid, helping girls to go to school. Sex worker jobs can no longer be advertised in Job Centres; the Bailey review has been commissioned, tackling the sexualisation of children. Parents have been enabled with more internet filters.
We don’t support all of this despite being Conservative. We support it because we are Conservative and believe in equality of opportunity for all."