Making Greater Manchester the Best City for Gender Equality by 2028

On the launch day of GM4Women2028, alongside Helen Pankhurst, Sam Smethers Fawcett Society, Eve Holt Diva Manc Kate Cook, Gemma Nash and Stella Bowdell, we the steering committee, talked with clarity, confidence and courage about the change we can realise for gender equality for Greater Manchester.

Collectively we spoke across the impact that businesses, organisations and institutions can make to drive the change. We spoke about the challenges still facing many women in the region today, and we heard from schools about the future they want to see for Greater Manchester. The scale of what still needs to be achieved by 2028, the anniversary of universal suffrage and of the challenges in collating meaningful data to assess the gender inequality across the region.

My own speech addressed not just the organisations and institutions we are calling on to make pledges, but also you the individual. And so in an effort to reach more of you with the same call to action for deeds not words, because we CAN do better - here is what I said:-

Our mission could not be clearer. We want Greater Manchester to be the best city for gender equality. And we want it by 2028.

The GM4Women2028 solution has been designed for success. Nothing of its kind has been done before and we can once again blaze a trail for equality from this great city of ours.

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We can do better

This initiative puts the power for change in the hands of those that can realise it.

 Us, we, you, the people.

 The collective power of every individual, organisation and employers pledge CAN and WILL drive the change.

 But how do we ensure we all deliver against our pledges? We have established a committee for each area, Safety, Education, Employment, Culture and Participation.

 Organisations, institutions and employers who have formally committed to a pledge will fall under one of these committees.  Annually we will publish the progress against each of their committed targets, in addition to the 10 scorecard indicators. Transparency is key to success.

 Each committee will also create networks and organise events, drive the agenda, improve data and push for progress.

 The simplicity and clarity of this initiative is that you, the business, organisation or individual define your stretch targets and own your solutions, we keep you accountable, together we make a difference, collectively we drive change.

 If you would like to volunteer to be on a committee as we still have spaces– get in touch via the website or email us

 We may well also form a committee around the individual pledges, for the change makers and firestarters amoungst you.

We have bags of opportunities for volunteers that want to get more involved so if you have time to regularly commit and skills to offer – do let us know, contact us by the all the usual channels.

And finally my last words are directed to YOU. You the individual with a voice, a spirit, strength and courage. Do not underestimate the power of your personal pledge and your ability to deliver against it.

Be Brave, take inspiration from Mancunian suffragettes and suffragists who came before you and showed you what can be achieved with Clarity, Confidence and Courage. Lets be the heroes of our own time.

We CAN do better and we WILL do better. 

We are the change and now is still the time for Deeds not Words.

We Can Do Better. With your help, we WILL do better.

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Launch of #GM4Women2028, Pankhurst-Fawcett Scorecard

2028 will mark the anniversary of universal suffrage. It will also mark the the end of a 10 year commitment from Greater Manchester organisations, employers and individuals committed to addressing gender inequality in the region by a new initiative by a coalition formed by Helen Pankhurst. GM4Women2028.

The coalition will launch Wednesday 6th Feb with the Pankhurst-Fawcett Scorecard. A set of 10 indicators marking the progress of gender equality across Education, Employment, Safety, Participation and Culture.

The coming together of the Pankhurst and Fawcett legacies is an important and significant landmark which shows how 101 years on there is still so much progress to be made. The stats in the Pankhurst-Fawcett Scorecard show the scale of inequality, and that’s only from data we’ve had access too.

Whether a suffragette or a suffragist, those that fought for gender equality all those years ago had 3 key qualities which enabled them to secure the vote for women. Clarity, Confidence and Courage.

Clarity on a mission to free half the human population and through that freedom save the other half. Confidence in their abilities, solutions and strategies to achieve their goal, the Courage to act on their beliefs despite the risks and fears to see change delivered.

These were ordinary people, capable of extraordinary things. People like you and me. With resilience, a vision, a purpose and a drive to realise change - proving seemingly impossible goals really can become real. The best thing is that these are qualities we can all have, and if you think you lack them, with the support of people around you, you can learn to have them.

Now 101 years on, we call on all of us to continue this mission. We call on each of you whether you are an organisation, a leader or an individual to define your own goal to make a shift in the dial of gender inequality. To make a pledge. To define what YOU can do.

To have Clarity about your individual, or your organisations pledge to improve gender equality. To have the Confidence in your plan, strategy and ability to deliver against it. To have the Courage to act on it and see it through.

Yes, we need structural changes, yes we need organisation changes - yet we are the people that make those things happen. We are all collectively change makers. We’ve done it before and we can do it again. Individually and collectively. Whether large or small every individual action, pledge and change can and will shift the dial.

Join us around the Emmeline statue at 1.30pm Wednesday 6 Feb with Helen Pankhurst and our sisters and brothers from across Greater Manchester. With Clarity, Confidence and Courage, you can too be a change maker. Deeds not Words.

Courage and solidarity,


#pankhurstfawcettscorecard #gm4women2028 #beyourownHERo #riseup #liftup #bebraver



“Women in Greater Manchester still face significant inequalities, yet the region is proud of its progressive and feminist history. 

This pride can be turned into concerted action.

 We are calling on organisations, employers, institutions and the community of Greater Manchester to support and become involved.”  Helen Pankhurst


We’d like to invite you to the launch of the Pankhurst-Fawcett Scorecard, an exciting new initiative led by Helen Pankhurst, and co-ordinated by Manchester Metropolitan University and Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce. Developed with a range of partners and organisations (GM4Women2028), the initiative coordinates mutual accountability and a charge for progress on gender equality in Greater Manchester. GM4Women2028  is a coalition dedicated to advancing the gender equality agenda across Greater Manchester, a region that has long flown the flag for women’s rights.

Please join us at the event to add your support and voice, as an employer, organisation or individual. There will be an opportunity to network, and hear from some great speakers, including Helen Pankhurst, great granddaughter of Emmeline.  

Places at the event must be booked in advance, CLICK HERE for more details and to book your place.

You can also help by joining the group, sharing the scorecard and commenting on the statistics.

The scorecard is available at: