Daughters' Rights are fighting to take the last state sanctioned sexual discrimination off the statue books by removing the word 'male' from male primogeniture and allowing women to stand for election to the House of Lords by inheriting titles. We can't do this without support - please contribute and share this page on social media now.
We are asking Parliament to get their House in order & set an example for the rest of society by combatting discrimination within its own walls.
It should be proving to other sectors and other countries that the UK is committed to combating inequality in every form. Spain abolished male primogeniture a decade ago, it was changed for the royal family in 2013 but the government is ignoring the ongoing and systematic discrimination of women at the heart of parliament.
Progress through history
It is one hundred years since women got the vote but astonishingly we're still working on their legacy to finish the job of full equal rights in our governing bodies.
There is an appetite for reform
Inheriting via the male line is anachronistic and unjust. 'Suffrage did not create equal opportunity' (Annalee Newitz) and it's staggering that equal opportunity cannot be taken for granted in the 21st century.
Within the peerage, there are fathers, brothers and uncles who are happy for their female relatives to inherit titles.The only impediment to this change is the will.
There is precedent for reform
There is reform in every part of society: royal succession; women bishops; board rooms; golf clubs. No excuse for there not to be reform in the House of Lords.
Balance benefits everyone
Gender balance and equal opportunities should be encouraged in all decision-making bodies.
This is one quick-fix solution for ensuring balance in our Parliament. All it takes is for the word “male” to be removed from male primogeniture.
A broader pool of talent will enhance the quality of candidates.
We have five daughters who are unable to stand for election to the House of Lords because of their gender. We are taking their cases to the European Court of Human Rights to challenge the government who we believe are in breach of Article 3 of the First Protocol read with Article Fourteen of the European Convention on Human Rights - they are discriminated against because of their gender and the right to a free election.
How much are we raising and why?
We want to take this fight the whole way and that could include all the way to the European Court of Human Rights so costs are likely to rise very quickly. Initially we are raising £15,000, but ultimately we want to raise as much as we can to support our legal efforts. We will be using the money to support a range of legal costs including court fees, expert analysis, administrative costs and help getting the word out about the case.
In 2008, a Bosnian-Herzegovinan case went to the European Court of Human Rights when two men challenged their right to stand for election to their upper house who had been denied based on their race, and they won. By swapping race for gender, the cases are identical.
Why am I doing this?
This is very simply a wrong that needs righting. It may affect a small section of the population but should that mean we overlook the hypocrisy of the government and the rights of women? Government should be held to account for everyone.
Daughters' Rights been working with three barristers.
Edward Legard who specialises in discrimination, Junior Counsel
Paul Hardy from DLA Piper, solicitor
Lord David Pannick QC, Lead Counsel
We have a strongly arguable case and every chance of success.
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