These activities tend to focus on a particular policy area – employment, health, education etc. Speakers are invited to address the audience, with women being given an opportunity to ask questions and speak about their own experiences of the subject being discussed.
Following each discussion a report is produced. This document, which uses direct quotes from the women attending, is sent to politicians as well as those with responsibility for the key policy areas discussed. Copies are also sent to those who attended the event. Feedback records the sense of empowerment felt by women and their call for change in local and national decisions which affect women’s daily lives.
Women in Scotland during Covid
The Scottish Women's Convention recently hosted a Zoom Conference on women's experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday, 30th March 2021, from 6-8pm.
Event attendees heard from women who contributed to our successful International Women's Day Event earlier in the month, including frontline workers in the NHS and social care alongside equality and human rights activists.
Speakers for this event included Clare Haughey, SNP MSP for Rutherglen and Minister for Mental Health, Colette Mason, a Links Manager with Alliance Scotland, Mauve Grindall, from See Me Scotland, and Siobhan McCready from Unite the Union.
Given the significant contributions from women to these events, we have created a specific space on our site to highlight our work as well as a number of key resources and organisations. Click here to access!
The SWC has undertaken a series of work regarding Social Care and the impact on women in Scotland.
Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Scottish Women’s Convention gathered first-hand evidence and information regarding women’s experiences of the Social Care sector. Digital roundtables, online surveys, email submissions and phone interviews were conducted in order to gather a range of information.
We held our first online Conferences on this focus area, with two dates across September and October 2020. These events brought attendees and speakers together to discuss some of the most pressing issues. We wanted to cover everything from experiences before and during the COVID-19 pandemic to what we need to do in future to make social care work for everyone in Scotland.
Do Women in Scotland want another Independence Referendum?
The SWC held a Conference around the topic "Do Women in Scotland want another Referendum?" to discuss with women whether or not another vote should take place. The focus given to this topic ensured women were given a platform for their lived experiences, voices and opinions to come to a fully informed decision that empowers them. All sides of the debate came together to ensure a uniquely women-centered perspective on whether or not another Scottish Independence Referendum should take place.
Prior to this, the SWC also collated responses from an online survey around the topic to ensure women who could not make the Conference still had their voices heard. We would like to thank everyone who took the time to take part in both the Event and the Survey.
What Does Poverty Look Like?
Poverty shows no signs of going away. The SWC arranged this body of work to champion women’s experiences and highlight just how big a challenge our society is facing. Ongoing austerity and cuts to our vital public services have led to an inequality we should not be seeing and having to fight in this day and age. Women are desperate and are living in dire conditions because they cannot access what should be a basic fundamental right.
The Scottish Women’s Convention compiled this report using women’s lived experiences. We obtained these from our Conference, roundtables and facilitated discussions. We also used information previously recorded from our roadshows.
Women and the Justice System
The SWC held a Conference in October, 2019, in order to gauge real women's experiences of navigating the justice system. Attendees heard from a number of different speakers who played a part in helping women access justice. They were also given the opportunity to participate in a Question and Answer Session and share their own experiences.
During the Conference, a number of women spoke of their experiences with the justice system in Scotland. For a few, this was the first time they had spoken about their experiences in public. The SWC thanks these women for their bravery in speaking out.
Women's Experiences of Menopause
The SWC, in our thematic body of work on health last summer, uncovered a wealth of evidence from women like relating to the menopause. As a result, we created a survey to further explore the issues raised, so that we can have as broad an understanding of women's experiences as possible.
The results from the survey can be accessed here. We would like to thank all of the women who took the time to share their story with us.
The organisation held a conference on Saturday 2nd February, where attendees heard from women with direct experience of menopause and how this has impacted on their personal and working lives. Discussions allowed women to share experiences, as well as discuss priorities around what needs to be done for women to bring about meaningful change and equality.
Housing and Homelessness
The SWC undertook a programme of work on issues around housing and homelessness from Autumn 2018 until Summer 2019.
A conference was held in October to launch this work. Attendees heard from a range of speakers, with experience of issues around housing and homelessness for women. They were also given the opportunity to participate in a Question and Answer session.
In addition, the SWC held a further follow up event in July, 2019, to complement the work undertaken around women's issues with housing and homelessness.
We went on to hold roundtables with women throughout the country in order to ascertain their views, experiences and ideas for change on a range of topics relevant to housing and homelessness. We collaborated with a number of organisations undertaking significant work in this area. You can find out more about each below.
Roundtable Reports on Women's Homelessness:
Women Asylum Seeker Housing Project - December 2018
Simon Community Scotland - December 2018
Community Links Govan - March 2019
Shakti Women's Aid - May 2019
Women's Health in Scotland
During 2018 the SWC undertook a programme of work to compile a comprehensive overview of women’s health in Scotland, including a range of issues such as breast screening, cancer detection, treatment and support; cervical screening, cancer detection, treatment and support; transvaginal mesh implants, thyroid problems and mental health, as well as any other pressing areas of concern raised by women.
Online Survey - An online survey gathered as much information from women of various backgrounds, ages and from diverse geographical areas in order to inform our work.
Roundtables - Roundtable discussions on the key women’s health themes outlined above allowed us to further explore the issues around women's health.
Health Conference - A conference was held at the Hilton Grosvenor Hotel, Byres Road, on Saturday 21st July, which also provided the opportunity for further discussions around key topics. A report from the event has been published and the SWC would encourage women to use the information contained within this document to press for the changes that you want to see – sharing our findings with friends, family and your communities.
The SWC has also produced -
- Advice and Information Leaflet
- Recommendations by Women for Women
- Women's Heath: Contributing Factors
The presentations by those speaking at the event -
Sexual Harassment Conference
The Scottish Women’s Convention (SWC) held an event at the Hilton Grosvenor on Saturday, 20th January focusing specifically on the subject of sexual harassment. Whilst the SWC has continuously heard from women across Scotland upon this subject, given the unfaltering flow of allegations that have come to light from across the globe, the need for an event of this nature was apparent.
In holding this conference, the SWC wanted to identify key priorities for change directly from grassroots women who have knowledge and experience of the issue. As well as this, bringing together women from many different backgrounds to share stories and engage collectively is extremely important in conquering this endemic which has gone unchallenged within society for far too long. The SWC would like to thank all the speakers and women who came forth on the day to take part in such a significant event.
We are proud to have held many conferences since our founding. These have covered a wide variety of issues, from Human Trafficking, Violence Against Women and Sectarianism, to Social Security, the EU Referendum and Employment.
Through this work, we have developed a wealth of knowledge from women across Scotland sharing their lived experiences. This has provided guidance and evidence for our Consultation responses and other interactions with decision-makers.
In this section
Sexual Harassment Conference Report The Scottish Women’s Convention (SWC) held an event at the Hilton Grosvenor on Saturday, 20th January focussing specifically on the subject of sexual harassment.
SWC EU Referendum Event The report from the SWC EU Referendum Event, held in the Hilton Grosvenor Hotel, Glasgow on Saturday 28th May 2016.