Throwing out the baby and the bathwater

Waiting to hear Theresa May’s statement about the News of the World phone tapping story, I was depressed to hear the Home Secretary crowing that, while it took Labour 12 years to get round to compiling a strategy aimed at ending violence against women, her government was going to do the same within one year.

The Labour strategy (which I worked on briefly, so I may be biased) wasn’t perfect and had more to say on some subjects than others; but it was based on the largest public consultation ever undertaken on the subject.  It looked at domestic violence, sexual violence, honour killing, FGM, human trafficking  and  gender-related bullying among young people.  It included contributions from victims, asylum-seeking, traveller  and refugee women and almost every department in Whitehall, as well as the police, prisons service  and the CPS among others. It was a serious piece of work.  I’ll be interested to see what they come up with that’s different, but I can’t quite believe that they are really proposing to go over all that ground again – re-consult, produce another report, repeat the funding and governance negotiations between Whitehall departments  – and wait a year for it all to happen.  Why?  Can’t we just make what we have work?

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2 responses to “Throwing out the baby and the bathwater

  1. The Line To Take

    Because the thought process of the new Home Office ministerial team was probably “if we implement the existing strategy, it wouldn’t be ours, it would be theirs. And they would crow its successes to the high heavens and take the credit that we should get for making it work. And when you look at it, it assumes too much that Government is part of the solution rather than recognising itself as part of the problem, it is too top-down and needs to be retuned to meet the Big Society agenda.”
    Or to put it another way, if it’s not our policy, we’re not doing it. We’ll get our own.

  2. I’m sure you’re right – so much for a new approach to government. Meet the new politics – it’s the same as the old politics

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