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The post of Minister for Women and Equalities (formerly, Minister for Women, and Minister for Women and Equality) is a ministerial position in the United Kingdom Government Equalities Office, an independent department within the wider Home Office that has responsibility for addressing all forms of discrimination, with particular emphasis on gender inequality. Its counterpart in the shadow cabinet is the Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities.

Minister for Women and Equalities
Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom (HM Government).svg
Royal Arms as used by Her Majesty's Government
Official portrait of Elizabeth Truss crop 2.jpg
Incumbent
Liz Truss

since 10 September 2019
Government Equalities Office
StyleThe Right Honourable
AppointerElizabeth II
Inaugural holderHarriet Harman
Formation3 May 1997; 22 years ago (1997-05-03) (as Minister for Women)
Websitewww.equalities.gov.uk/

HistoryEdit

The position of Minister for Women was created by Tony Blair when he became prime minister as a means of prioritising women's issues across government. Prior to that, there had been an equality unit in the Cabinet Office and a Cabinet committee, which were continued under the leadership of the new minister.[1] When Gordon Brown succeeded Blair, he created the post of Minister for Women and Equality to handle a wider range of equalities issues. The first Minister for Women and, ten years later, the first Minister for Women and Equality was Harriet Harman. On 12 October 2007[2] a new department, the Government Equalities Office was created to support the minister. When David Cameron became prime minister, he gave the position its current name without a change in its responsibilities. Since its creation, the position has always been held by a minister sitting in Cabinet by virtue of another office (i.e., a Secretary of State or Leader of one of the Houses of Parliament).

Justine Greening replaced Nicky Morgan as both Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities when Theresa May was appointed Prime Minister on 13 July 2016. Morgan initially held the title of Minister for Women after the resignation of Maria Miller in April 2014, in conjunction with being Financial Secretary to the Treasury, whilst the Equalities brief was given to Sajid Javid who had replaced Miller as Secretary of State for Culture. While the Women and Equalities briefs were recombined in July 2014, the responsibility for marriage equality was assigned to Nick Boles, who held the title of Minister of State for Skills, Enterprise and Equalities and had a base in both the Education and Business departments. Both splits in responsibilities were due to Nicky Morgan having voted against the legalisation of gay marriage.[3]

Lord Northbourne has called for the creation of a minister to concentrate on issues specific to men.[4]

List of ministersEdit

Minister for WomenEdit

Cabinet minister Junior minister Term of office Political party Prime minister
Harriet Harman
(also Social Security Secretary)
  Joan Ruddock 3 May 1997 27 July 1998 Labour Tony Blair
The Lady Jay
(also Leader of the House of Lords)
  Tessa Jowell 27 July 1998 8 June 2001
Patricia Hewitt
(also Trade and Industry Secretary)
  The Lady Morgan (2001)
Barbara Roche (2001–03)
Jacqui Smith (2003–05)
8 June 2001 5 May 2005
Tessa Jowell
(also Minister for the Olympics)
  Meg Munn 5 May 2005 5 May 2006
Ruth Kelly
(also Communities and Local Govt. Secretary)
  5 May 2006 27 June 2007

Minister for Women and EqualityEdit

Cabinet Minister Juniors Term of office Political party Prime Minister
Harriet Harman
(also Leader of the House of Commons)
  Minister of State:
Barbara Follett (2007–08)
Maria Eagle (2008–10)
Parliamentary Secretary:
Michael Foster
28 June 2007 11 May 2010 Labour Gordon Brown

Minister for Women and EqualitiesEdit

Cabinet Minister Parliamentary Secretary Term of office Political party Prime Minister
Theresa May
(also Home Secretary)
  Lynne Featherstone (LD) 12 May 2010 4 September 2012 Coalition
ConsLD
David Cameron
(Coalition)
Maria Miller
(also Culture Secretary)
  Jo Swinson (LD)
Helen Grant (Cons)
4 September 2012 9 April 2014

Minister for Women and Minister for EqualitiesEdit

Cabinet Ministers Juniors Term of office Political party Prime Minister
Minister for Women

Nicky Morgan
(also Financial Secretary to the Treasury)

  Jo Swinson (LD)
Helen Grant (Cons)
9 April 2014 15 July 2014 Coalition
ConsLD
David Cameron
(Coalition)
Minister for Equalities

Sajid Javid
(also Culture Secretary)

 

Minister for Women and EqualitiesEdit

Cabinet Minister Juniors Term of office Political party Prime Minister
Nicky Morgan
(also Secretary of State for Education)
  Jo Swinson (LD)
Helen Grant (Cons)
15 July 2014 8 May 2015 Coalition
ConsLD
David Cameron
(Coalition)
Caroline Dinenage 8 May 2015 14 July 2016 Conservative David Cameron
(II)
Justine Greening
(also Secretary of State for Education)
  14 July 2016 14 June 2017 Theresa May
(I)
Nick Gibb (Minister for Equalities)
Anne Milton (Minister for Women)
14 June 2017 8 January 2018 Theresa May
(II)
Amber Rudd
(also Home Secretary)
  Baroness Williams of Trafford (Minister for Equalities)
Victoria Atkins (Minister for Women)
9 January 2018 30 April 2018
Penny Mordaunt
(also Defence Secretary)
  30 April 2018 24 July 2019
Amber Rudd
(also Work and Pensions Secretary)
  24 July 2019 7 September 2019 Boris Johnson
Liz Truss
(also International Trade Secretary)
  10 September 2019 Incumbent

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Abrams, Fran (4 June 1997). "Harman heads team to put women's issues first". The Independent. Retrieved 18 January 2011.
  2. ^ "The Transfer of Functions (Equality) Order 2007". legislation.gov.uk. 2007. Retrieved 28 January 2013.
  3. ^ Mason, Rowena (15 July 2014). "Nicky Morgan's gay-marriage stance causes equalities role confusion... again". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
  4. ^ "FHM: For Him Minister?". BBC News Online. 3 March 2004. Retrieved 28 January 2013.