Islington has a long history of raising and supporting brilliant women.
From Edith Garrud, the Suffragette who taught ju-jitsu, to Valda James, the first Black woman to be elected to Islington Council in 1986 and to the modern day with Alexandra Burke.
On this year’s International Women’s Day, it is important to recognise all of the work we are doing to support women in our borough. From Council youth hubs supporting Islington’s girls to make the best possible start in life, to the employability programme, helping local women into good, well-paid jobs, Islington’s Labour-run Council is focused on making our borough a more equal place, including for women and girls.
Our Labour Council prioritises making Islington a safer place for women and girls.
In 2020, the Council announced an extra £2.5million investment into work to tackle violence against women and girls, including support for those suffering from domestic abuse and rehabilitation for perpetrators.
Over the past year, our Labour-run Council has focused on listening to local women, hearing their concerns and taking action to make Islington a safer place.
Led by Executive Member for Community Safety, Cllr Sue Lukes, last year, the Council undertook the largest community safety engagement series in the country. Safer Spaces allowed us to listen to local people, including women and girls, about what makes them feel unsafe and what we can do to help.
The recent Islington Together Walk for Women (pictured above) saw local women and girls come together to campaign for safer places and speak about how we could make that happen.
Islington’s Labour-run Council is taking action. The Safe Havens programme works with local businesses and organisations to train them on how to effectively help someone who feels in danger. The Safe Havens stickers show local people where they can go if they feel unsafe. There are now 100 Safe Havens in Islington and we will have 300 by 2023.
The Council was recently awarded DAHA accreditation, the UK benchmark for how housing providers should respond to domestic abuse in the UK.
And last year, we took on a new approach for tackling domestic violence and supporting those affected. This has seen a 15 times increase in responses to the most urgent referrals, a 305% increase in requests for protection orders and engagement with 88% of survivors.
But there is more to do. No one is safe until everyone is safe and that is why our Labour-run Council continues listening, continues engaging and continues taking action. Read more about the Council’s strategy to tackle violence against women and girls here.