Polling power of the pink bus
Published on: 31 Mar 2015
LABOUR’S controversial pink bus pulled up at a school in South Gloucestershire to talk about girl power.
Pupils from Hanham Abbots Junior School greeted the Woman to Woman bus, which has been touring the country to engage with the millions of women who did not vote in the 2010 general election.
On board the eye-catching vehicle were Labour’s election candidate for Kingswood, Jo McCarron, Euro MP Clare Moody and Jan Royall, leader of the Labour Party in the House of Lords.
After a tour of the school, the women answered questions from female pupils and parents which touched on various topics including women in sport, fair pay, the NHS and education.
Ms McCarron, a former pupil at the school, said: “There are nine million women registered to vote who don’t vote - this is a shocking state of affairs.
“A lot of women have been badly let down by the policies of this government and this is why they need more of a say than ever.”
Addressing pupils, Baroness Royall said: “We want to make sure there are equal opportunities so girls can do the same as boys. You are just as good as the boys and you have got to remember that.”
Parent Vikki Gerrish, 42, who has two children, said she felt the visit had been worthwhile.
“It was really interesting. Politics is just not engaging the average woman. Women switch off because of the way politics are portrayed in the papers and on television. It can be worse than the playground - politicians don’t know how to behave.”
After the meeting Ms McCarron said she had been impressed by the questions posed by pupils: “It shows a sense of how important it is to them to be equal. I hope they will take something from this and grow up to realise they can do whatever boys can do.”
The tour has provoked mixed reactions from the public with some saying the pink bus is patronising to woman. Others argue colour is irrelevant if it achieves its aim of engaging more women in politics.