Since we were founded in 2001, Bristol Fawcett has campaigned on a huge range of issues.  We have lobbied central and local government, led demonstrations, worked with other local organisations, responded to numerous consultations and worked hard to keep gender equality firmly in the local spotlight.
  • We have led demonstrations in Bristol on equal pay and on provision for survivors of sexual violence
  • We have investigated and raised awareness of women's representation in the media
  • We have protested against the normalisation of damaging and limiting sex object culture
  • We have worked with local politicians to address the invisibility of women, and women's concerns, in politics
  • We have lobbied and campaigned for:

    • Better pension provision for women
    • Better support for women who have been raped and sexually assaulted - including the Sexual Assault Referral Centre and the Rape Crisis Centre for Bristol
    • Improved legislation for gender equality
    • Action on human trafficking
    • Action on licensing legislation
    • Action on gender equality in schools and colleges
    • Improved access for women into public life
    • Better provision for women offenders in the criminal justice system

    Current projects and events
    Bristol Fawcett members currently have a strategic focus on the following areas:

    Cutting Women Out in Bristol
    "Austerity measures" pose a triple jeopardy to women's equality:
    Women's jobs are being hit hardest; services that women use most are being cut; and women - who already do 2 hours unpaid work a day more than men - are the ones who 'fill the gaps' left by the removal of care related services.  In Bristol, we are working to highlight the shockingly unfair impact that cuts will have upon the most vulnerable in our society.  Find out more here.

    Counting Women In for Bristol

    Our vision for a feminist politics is one that recognises women as over 50% of the population, that recognises the strengths and benefits of collaborative decision-making and that conceptualises leadership as power to enable rather than the exercise of power over others. Find out more here.

    Gender Equality in Education
    We want schools and colleges in Bristol to provide first-rate education about gender equality, including sexual and domestic violence.  We also want schools and colleges to meet their requirements under law to develop and publish Gender Equality Schemes and Action Plans.  Find out more about our project, and about what you can do, here.

    Lapdancing Clubs
    We supported and lobbied for early adoption of the new reforms to licensing legislation in Bristol.  We contributed to consultation on Bristol's new policy for the licensing of Sexual Entertainment Venues.  We campaign to educate people about the problematic aspects of striptease and lapdancing clubs for gender equality.  Find out more here.  

    Women in Sport
    Women and men regularly state that they want to see more coverage of women’s sport.
    We know it’s not that women and girls are not playing sport - but its not getting the coverage in the media that it should.  We are addressing this issue at a local level with our blog - Sport Watch Bristol - which provides up to date listings of women’s sporting events in Bristol and invite everyone to show up and support.  We also feature regular stories on local women athletes, as well as commentary, sports reports, and news articles. We are looking for local sports fans, aspiring journalists and keen women to contribute.  Find out more here.

    Recent and ongoing projects

    Violence Against Women
    Bristol Fawcett has worked with others for several years to improve local services for women affected by all forms of gender-based violence. In 2006 Bristol Fawcett led a demonstration on College Green about the lack of a rape crisis centre in Bristol.  There was subsequently significant local improvement in attention given to sexual violence.  Bristol Fawcett contributed to the Safer Bristol Partnership’s Rape and Sexual Assault Strategic Group and we worked towards the launch of Bristol’s SARC (sexual assault referral centre: The Bridge) which opened in 2008.  We also supported the development of Bristol's Rape Crisis Centre, which opened in 2009.  We also support Bristol's Reclaim the Night campaign.  We work with the city's Strategic Group on Violence and Abuse Against Women and Girls.  Find out more about our work on sexual violence here.  If you would like to get involved with Rape Crisis Bristol (SARSAS), please visit their website for more details. 

    Human Trafficking
    In 2007 Bristol Fawcett undertook a review of work being done around the trafficking of women in the local area.  Members met with journalists and the police, and produced a report highlighting the lack of investigative work being undertaken.  Trafficking - whether for forced marriage, or forced labour including sexual exploitation - is not in the public domain and intelligence is not easy to come by.  Proactive work in the area was historically rare.  Bristol Fawcett held a conference in 2009 on the trafficking of women for sexual exploitation.  In 2009 Bristol City Council recognised the need to develop strategy and services around the issue of trafficking.  Bristol Fawcett are members of the Bristol Roundtable on human trafficking, working to increase awareness and to influence policy and service provision locally.  Visit our page on trafficking here.

    Representation of women in the media
    In July 2007, the group undertook an action around representation of women in the media.  Members each chose a topic within this broad theme to document and analyse their individual experiences and observations during that day of women’s representation in the media.  The results were collated and some are available on our website, here.  In 2008 we joined forces with Bristol Feminist Network for a bigger project, exhibition and series of events which are documented here.  There is a dedicated website for the project, which you can visit here, as well as a blog - visit it here.

    Sexual Objectification

    For many years the focus for campaigning organisations such as Fawcett has been on working towards equality between women and men under the the law, in public life, in the workplace and in the economy.  In recent years there has been growing disquiet at the escalating sexualisation of young people and the explosion in the media and in our culture of the commodification of women's bodies as objects.  Research tells us that when women are routinely portayed as objects their status as human beings is diminished (alongside their hopes for equal treatment).  Research also tells us that the mental health of women and girls is damaged by pervasive messages about how they 'should' look, or behave - within narrowly defined and yet often extreme parameters.  Therefore in addition to our work on Representations of Women in the Media our members actively challenge the normalisation of harmful messages about women and their bodies.  In 2010 we campaigned against a striptease in Bristol Museum and supported the campaign to Say No to Hooters in Bristol during the short time that this breast-themed restaurant was present in our city.  Visit our page on Hooters and commercial sexualisation here

    Join us!!!

    Banner: stop cutting women out


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