Minister for Women and Equalities
|Minister for Women and Equalities|
Arms of Her Majesty's Government
|Government Equalities Office|
|Style||The Right Honourable|
|Inaugural holder||Harriet Harman|
|Formation||28 June 2007|
The post of Minister for Women and Equalities (formerly, Minister for Women) is a ministerial position in the United Kingdom Government Equalities Office, an independent department within the wider Department for Culture, Media and Sport that has responsibility for addressing all forms of discrimination, with particular emphasis on gender inequality.
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. 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 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).
The current Minister for Women and Equalities, Nicky Morgan, is also Secretary of State for Education. After the resignation of Maria Miller in April 2014, Morgan initially held the title of Minister for Women 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 holds the title of Minister of State for Skills, Enterprise and Equalities and has 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.
List of Ministers
Minister for Women
|Cabinet Minister||Junior Minister||Term of office||Political party||Prime Minister|
(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||Labour|
(also Trade and Industry Secretary)
|The Lady Morgan (2001)
Barbara Roche (2001–03)
Jacqui Smith (2003–05)
|8 June 2001||5 May 2005||Labour|
(also Minister for the Olympics)
|Meg Munn||5 May 2005||5 May 2006||Labour|
(also Communities and Local Govt. Secretary)
|60px||5 May 2006||27 June 2007||Labour|
Minister for Women and Equality
|Cabinet Minister||Juniors||Term of office||Political party||Prime Minister|
(also Leader of the House of Commons)
|Minister of State:
Barbara Follett (2007–08)
Maria Eagle (2008–10)
|28 June 2007||11 May 2010||Labour||Gordon Brown|
Minister for Women and Equalities
|Cabinet Minister||Parliamentary Secretary||Term of office||Political party||Prime Minister|
(also Home Secretary)
|Lynne Featherstone (LD)||12 May 2010||4 September 2012||Coalition
(also Culture Secretary)
|60px||Jo Swinson (LD)
Helen Grant (Cons)
|4 September 2012||9 April 2014|
|Minister for Women
Minister for Equalities
|9 April 2014||15 July 2014|
(also Secretary of State for Education)
|15 July 2014||8 May 2015|
|Caroline Dinenage||8 May 2015||Incumbent||Conservative||David Cameron
- Abrams, Fran (4 June 1997). "Harman heads team to put women's issues first". The Independent. Retrieved 18 January 2011.
- "The Transfer of Functions (Equality) Order 2007". legislation.gov.uk. 2007. Retrieved 28 January 2013.
- Mason, Rowena (15 July 2014). "Nicky Morgan's gay-marriage stance causes equalities role confusion... again". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 July 2014.
- "FHM: For Him Minister?". BBC News Online. 3 March 2004. Retrieved 28 January 2013.