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What will get her vote? It’s very simple: True allyship.

As we hurtle towards an election, we can be sure of one thing at least: women don’t  think the world has their back. 


In Think Stylist’s white paper Women At 30, UK 30-somethings told us that they don’t  feel supported by society right now, with 79% feeling that the outside world won’t  solve their problems.  


Childcare costs and violence against women were cited as the top issues that need most attention, but there’s  plenty more to add to that list. Sexism’s up there (last year the Met was declared institutionally sexist by the Baroness Louise Casey Review, and according to the Fawcett Society, 69% of women MPs have witnessed  sexist behaviour in Parliament in the last five years). As is money (women in their 30’s are around £4K worse off per year now than in 2010). As is the continued erosion of healthcare (last month’s findings by the Birth Trauma Inquiry called for an overhaul of UK maternity and postnatal care, estimating 30,000 women suffer negative birth experiences every year).  


And that’s  all against a less than fuzzy backdrop of a global women’s rights rollback in recent years that include overturned abortion rights in the US, Taliban restrictions on female education and freedoms in Afghanistan and strict censorship policies on feminist rhetoric and content in China. 

  “It really scares me where the world is going; it's  so polarised in so many different areas. Women being targeted in conflict to cause terror,  abortion rights being abolished….  It incenses me. It’s  all to do with control in society and minorities, like women, get squeezed. And I don’t  feel like it’s  going to get better.” UK woman age  30 


This ‘world versus women’ dynamic is only going to become more palpable between now and election days as we wrestle with who  will best represent  the rights and needs of women in such a hostile environment.   


At an event in March for King College London’s  Poll to Poll 2024  series (1.5 billion people will vote this year in over 50 countries),  Professor of Politics and Director of the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership, Rosie Campbell  said the issues that will  make women turn out and vote more than men “are the key issues they care about more, which is the NHS, the cost-of-living crisis, housing and childcare. Those are all massive issues in society and if the election is not about those, then that is a travesty.” 


From our side, Campbell’s spot on in her summation. In a recent Think Stylist survey, 40% of women cited the NHS and healthcare availability as their No 1 issue for the coming election, with the state of the economy and lowering inflation tucked behind  at No 2.   


So  who gets the Stylist woman’s vote? Right now  59% have no confidence in any political party and out of the 89% planning to vote, 24% are currently undecided and a further 21% expect their voting preferences to change between now and July 4. 


This last-minute wavering is entirely down to a lack of allyship for women across the political sphere, as well as a deep lack of trust stemming from the last few years (39% of women distrust all parties). Stylist women told us  their key characteristics in a future PM are  ‘ethical behaviour’,  ‘accountability for wrongdoing’,  ‘transparency’,  and ‘more consequences for those who report inaccuracies or falsities’.  More importantly though, 51% of the electorate need proof of who they can trust to protect the rights of women and all they hold dear. So come on  we implore you: show us what allyship looks like. 

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