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Politicians Should Stop Squabbling Over Feminist T-Shirts and Take Action Towards Gender Equality

30/10/2014 17:23 GMT | Updated 30/12/2014 10:59 GMT

feminist t shirt

Earlier this week David Cameron faced a huge backlash after choosing not to wear a feminist t-shirt sent from ELLE magazine.

While the debacle unfolded (and Twitter went into meltdown about the whole affair), Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg posed in theirs and were swiftly followed by deputy labour leader Harriet Harman, who sported hers during prime minister's questions. Presumably to show the PM up.

While all of this has been going on, a huge part of me has been wondering whether Miliband, Clegg, Harman and co. are actually supporting the fight for gender equality?

While they wear their t-shirts for the 'cause', I'm sceptical about what the motives truly are. Is it to help feminism find its voice? Will it help change policy? Or are they just using feminism to get back at one another?

My bet's on the latter.

Just this week, a report by the World Economic Forum showed that Britain has slipped out of the top 20 countries for gender equality. We now rank in 26th place behind Ecuador, Moldova and the Philippines.

According to the WEF, changes in women's income following the recession are the main reason behind Britain's fall. Currently for every £1 a man takes home, a woman takes home 85p. Blergh. Meanwhile, ratios of women in the workforce and number of women in senior roles are also out of kilter.

While all of this important stuff unfolds, pan back to cloud cuckoo land and politicians are still fighting a battle over who wears what.

So are these slogan tops actually helping gender equality progress? Or is feminism just being lost in a pile of t-shirts and squabbling politicians?

Women need to see policies for gender inequality being addressed pronto. What we don't need is politicians arguing over a bloody feminism t-shirt.

N.B. If all else fails ladies, we'll just have to mass-migrate to Iceland (aka country number one on the gender equality index).