SURVEY: Take our Feminist movement survey (UKFeminista)

Tell us about your passions, priorities and needs in our online survey

What feminist activities are you most inspired by? What do you want to campaign on? And what kind of support do you need to organise for a world without sexism?

We want to hear from feminists across the UK about the exciting things you’re doing and how we can help you do them. We’ve developed a short online survey and would love you to take part.

And if you complete it by Friday 7 June you’ll be entered into a draw to win a UK Feminista t-shirt and bag!

Here’s the link to the survey: ukfeminista.

PETITION: Brave’s Merida Gets a Disney Make-Over

Click for larger.

In 2006, The Walt Disney Company bought the computer-animated feature film powerhouse Pixar.  This makes the lead of their most recent movie, Brave (2012), not just a princess, but a Disney Princess.  Merida is having a royal coronation at the Magic Kingdom this morning.

For her coronation, the princess has gotten a good ol’ Disney makeover. On the left is the new Merida (“after”) and on the right is the old Merida (“before”).  Notice any differences? [Rest, socimages.]

Here’s a petition for you to sign to change Merida back (


NEWS: Kat Banyard discusses cosmetic surgery on Newsnight

On email from UK Feminista:

Thank you to everyone who supported our campaign to end cosmetic surgery advertising. Hundreds of you wrote to your MP about clamping down on the cowboy cosmetic surgery industry and its reckless advertising practices. Your actions made a real difference.

Last week Sir Bruce Keogh, NHS Medical Director, made recommendations to the Government to institute new measures to clamp down on this unaccountable and unregulated industry.

UK Feminista’s Kat Banyard was invited on to Newsnight to debate the recommendations on the back of our campaign. Watch it here today (from 30 minutes in, available to view until midnight today).

EVENT: What does a feminist (academic) look like?

Via email:

What does a feminist (academic) look like?

A workshop exploring the embodiment of feminist academic identity with guest speaker Mari K Niemi
Monday 17th June 12-3pm (bring your lunch!)
Graham Hills 509, University of Strathclyde

Please register and confirm attendance by 31 May by emailing Kirsty Alexander:

PODCAST: Can we call Beyonce The F Word?

From Jenessa Williams, HFC member (podcast on link below):

She has 17 grammies, 12 MTV awards and a star on the Hollywood walk of fame. A singer, dancer, actress, philanthropist, mother and a wife, it’s obvious that Beyonce is a highly influential artist, but is she a true feminist?

With The Guardian labelling her a ‘bad’ role model for young women after posing in her underwear on the cover of Men’s magazine GQ, and her lyrics of independence being criticised as hollow in the face of her new found family status, Beyonce appears to be losing face in the eyes of the media.

But what is the truth? Is it possible to strike a blow for women whilst wearing your underwear? Can you be proud of your married status and still fight for female empowerment? Is there really such a thing as a ‘bad’ feminist? I set out to speak to those on both sides of the Beyonce battle, to discover whether she has got what it takes to deserve the ultimate ‘F Word’ tag.

Your comments and thoughts are much appreciated – please comment below or get in touch on

Link: Can we call Beyonce The F Word? | Journalism & Media Newsroom.

ACTION: Please respond to the Government’s call for evidence for the Equality Duty Review

From an email from the NEWomen’s Network:

The call for evidence below is very important and may be our only chance to ensure that the Equality Duty Review panel takes into account the importance of having the Duty in place.  While not claiming that the Duty is perfect we would like to position it as something which has the potential to be improved and therefore even more effective. If you have used the Equality Duty and have evidence, then please do respond.

NEWomen’s Network are also co-ordinating a response – if you have any evidence please register here – NO LATER THAN 6 PM ON THURSDAY 18TH APRIL

The Government has announced a call for evidence for the Equality Duty Review. Please see below (details can be found here – CLOSING DATE FOR SUBMISSIONS IS THE 19 APRIL.

Call for evidence

The review is particularly focusing on the following key themes:

  • how well understood is the PSED and guidance
  • what are the costs and benefits of the PSED
  • how organisations are managing legal risk and ensuring compliance with the PSED
  • what changes, if any, would ensure better equality outcomes (legislative, administrative and/or enforcement changes, for example).

The Chair of the steering group is particularly interested in looking at equalities paperwork and policies related to PSED (particularly in relation to public sector procurement processes) and the collection, retention and use of diversity data by public bodies, for example, in relation to goods, facilities and services.

If you have evidence about how the PSED works that relate to any or all of the above points, please submit this to the PSED review team by Friday 19 April-

They will only be able to consider information relating to the Duty’s operation, and will not be able to consider submissions which are not evidence-based. They will not be able to consider evidence submitted after this date. They would also welcome examples of documentation you are aware of relating to the PSED, for example equality impact assessments, procurement forms, diversity data forms, guidance and toolkits.

They expect this combined review to be done by June 2013.

ACTION: Call for evidence – the impact of austerity measures upon women in the North East of England

This call came through on email from the North East Women’s Network.


In October 2012 NEWomen’s Network published “Findings and Recommendations from Interim Case Study: The impact of austerity measures upon women in the North East of England”. NEWN is now in the process of updating the case study to inform  the  shadow report being submitted by Women’s Resource Centre to the to the   Convention for the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) examination in Geneva in July 2013.

If you have any stories data, information, case studies, research or any other forms of evidence (including stories  and testimonies of women themselves) about the impact of the welfare reforms and austerity measures upon:

  • The lives of women in the North East and their children, families and the community
  • Cuts to women’s community and voluntary organisation
  • Cuts to women’s only services

If you have any evidence at all please register your details  (it will only take a minute or so)  and one of the researchers will contact you to arrange to follow up it up.

NEWomen’s Network intends to deal with the issues that are at the heart of the current economic crisis and tackle the underlining causes of women’s inequality and CEDAW provides us with a framework with which to do this. CEDAW was established in 1979 and is often referred to as the Women’s International Billof Rights.   Unlike domestic UK and European legislation on gender discrimination and equal treatment, the Convention is solely concerned with the position of women rather than discrimination faced by both sexes (which would include discrimination against men). CEDAW places obligations on the countries that have agreed to the Convention, to eliminate discrimination against women in all its forms.

Continue Reading…

ACTION: Calling women of colour to guest blog (f-word)

Following our call for guest bloggers towards the end of last year, we had a number of great people respond and have lined up a programme for most of the year based on those applications which we’re really excited about.

Nevertheless, we were concerned about the relative lack of applicants who were identifiably women of colour. We want to try to correct this, so we’ve reserved some spaces towards the end of 2013, and are putting out a second call to fill those slots.

If you’re a woman of colour who is British, living in Britain or writing with a British perspective who would be interested in a month-long guest blogging slot on The F Word blog please get in touch with me. Let me know a little bit about yourself, why you would like to blog and what sort of things you would like to blog about. Alternatively, if you would like to recommend someone else, please feel free to suggest them, with contact details if you have them.

Follow this link for more and for information on how to get involved: The F-Word.

NEWS: What Can Men Do to Stop Rape Culture?

Video on link.

At a panel presented by V-Day and The Nation, Eve Ensler challenged men to up their role in combating violence against women. As Nation sports editor Dave Zirin put it, rape culture is “what happens to our culture when we let it sit and don’t actively challenge violence against women.” It’s “not the two boys in Steubenville who committed the crime, it was the fifty people who saw it happen and did nothing.” To change that culture, the panel asks, what will it take to redefine masculinity? And what role do women have in that conversation?

—James Cersonsky

On thenation.

ACTION: Common Cause UK: Congolese women leading change for peace and justice

Common Cause UK is holding a peace vigil in Piccadilly Gardens (Manchester) on this coming Saturday, the 30th March. It is from 12.30pm until 2pm. The vigil is to raise awareness of the mass violence perpetrated against Congolese women.

Piece by ChristinaManch and Sam:

Mama Nzita is a founding member of Common Cause UK. In an interview with Black Feminists Manchester, she shares her thoughts about the ongoing campaign to raise awareness and end violence against Congolese women and girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She tells us more about the Common Cause Manchester group that formed in December 2012 and their upcoming peace vigil.

Int: Can you tell us about Common Cause UK?

MN: “Common Cause UK are a platform for Congolese women based in the UK, we empower ladies, teach them to know about their rights because ladies are not aware of their rights, they are suffering and facing many problems in this country, so that’s why Common Cause was set up to help ladies in our community.”

Is it specifically for Congolese women?

“At the beginning yes it was for Congolese women, but we have grown now and can help other women, but the focus is for Congolese women

Rest the rest: blackfeministsmanchester.