UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Not so much a glass ceiling as a concrete roof

In this article on the Dissent website the failure of some parts of the feminist movement to grasp the class politics of women's oppression in the workforce, in the economy and, yes, still in the home, is the subject of an excellent analysis from a US perspective:

It seeks out the paucity of the handwringing responses of the middle classes when tokenistic successes of the likes of Marisa Mayer (of CEO Google fame) are acclaimed as the means by which we can seek to bring more women to the boardrooms and thus feminist outcomes.

But, like the US, the working women in the UK are not so much suffering from a glass ceiling as a concrete roof of poverty. The women in the workforce that remain at the bottom of the pay pile are those same women forced into low paid part time work. Under employed and under paid.

The women who have lost their public sector jobs – but of no consequence to a Tory government who firmly see a woman’s role as being that of homemaker. The women who will struggle to feed their families because what little they have to exist on has been slashed by so called Welfare reforms and the binning of universal child benefit.

The concrete roof of poverty, that continues to suffocate women, will not be cracked by female CEOs of organisations that can’t even be bothered to pay their share of taxes – leading precisely to the capitalist conditions that aid and abet the systems and conditions that force women into a downward spiral. It is akin to the inanity of women who voted for Thatcher simply because she was a woman! We don’t need boardroom heroines of capitalism. We need women to crush capitalism.

Anna Rose