Women's Commission

Women's Commission

The purpose of Bristol's Women's Commission and its members.

Key purpose

The Mayor of Bristol acknowledges that:

  • equality of women and men is a fundamental right
  • to ensure this equality, multiple discrimination and disadvantage must be addressed
  • the balanced participation of women and men in decision making is a pre-requisite of a democratic society
  • the Equality Act 2010 requires public bodies to identify and address the impact of their policies, plans and practices on women

However, women in Bristol don't have equality of opportunity in work, public, social or family life. Bristol won't meet its vision and achieve its full potential if the experience, know-how, skills and creativity of women aren't fully taken into account.

The purpose of the Women's Commission is to work as a partnership to identify the key issues for women in Bristol and to produce an agreed Women's Strategy for Bristol, with a specific, time limited and practical action plan for its delivery.

The Women's Commission has established multi-agency task groups from members' organisations and other organisations and individuals in the city:

  • Women's Safety
  • Women's Representation in Public Life
  • Women and Transport
  • Women's Health
  • Women and the Economy

These groups produce in-depth reports with evidence and recommendations which are fed back to the Women's Commission. Accepted recommendations form part of the action plan.

The Bristol Women's Strategy will be the mechanism by which the City demonstrates its progress on meeting the obligations of the European Municipalities and Regions Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life.

Bristol, a zero tolerance city

The Women's Commission is leading the campaign for Bristol to become a city with zero tolerance to gender-based violence, abuse and exploitation.

City leaders and major employers across the city are invited to lead by example by signing a Pledge to commit to taking at least one action to promote zero tolerance. Organisations will be encouraged to choose from a range of actions, such as:

  • implementing domestic and sexual violence policies and strategies
  • raising awareness of gender-based violence through staff training
  • encouraging bystanders to report violence and abuse of friends and family

For further information contact the Equality and Community Cohesion Team on 0117 922 2662 or email

Members of the Women's Commission

  • Avon and Somerset Police, Marie Wright
  • Bristol City Council, Alison Comley, Strategic Director of Neighbourhoods
  • Bristol City Council, Becky Pollard, Director of Public Health
  • Bristol City Council, Councillor Fi Hance
  • Bristol City Council, Councillor Jude English
  • Bristol City Council, Councillor Lesley Alexander
  • Bristol City Council, Councillor Margaret Hickman
  • Bristol University, Judith Squires, Pro Vice-Chancellor(Education)
  • Bristol Women’s Voice, Diane Bunyan
  • Bristol Women’s Voice, Penny Gane, Chair of Bristol Women’s Commission
  • City of Bristol College, Diane Workman
  • Confederation of British Industry, Deborah Waddell
  • Consultants, Sandra Meadows
  • First Group, Sue Arrowsmith
  • Local Enterprise Partnership Kalpna Woolf
  • Local World Media, Sarah Pullen
  • South West TUC, Joanne Kaye
  • The Fawcett Society, Dr Helen Mott, Co-ordinator
  • University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, Rachel Edwards
  • University of the West of England, Jane Harrington
  • VOSCUR, Wendy Stephenson