Come to the Pankhurst Picnic
Author: Zoe Stavri
Published on Jul 03, 2012
July 15th marks a very special birthday: Emmeline Pankhurst, were she alive today, would be 154 years old.
Emmeline Pankhurst played a vital role in gaining women the vote, through a tenacious commitment to campaigning through direct action which led to repeated imprisonments. Pankhurst’s legacy has ultimately given women in the UK the right to participate in our democratic system.
To celebrate the life and work of Emmeline Pankhurst, London for Democracy will be throwing a birthday party, laying flowers at her statue in Westminster accompanied by speeches and an informal picnic to talk about how we can best continue Pankhurst’s work. Register on our website or on Facebook.
Despite having had the vote for decades, minority groups, working class people and women are still underrepresented at all levels of the political system. Throughout history, we have only had one woman Prime Minister, and the proportion of female MPs remains far below 50%. There are currently more MPs called David than MPs from black and minority ethnic groups. Very few are openly gay, and none openly trans or bisexual. The under-18s get no say at all, despite policies such as the cutting of Education Maintenance Allowance affecting only them. Decisions are still made for marginalised groups, rather than by them. This injustice pervades much of the system, until decisions benefit but a few privileged individuals.
How can we best solve this problem and fight for a system which serves the interests of everyone?
This is a conversation we need to have. And when better than on Emmeline’s birthday?