Women and Girls' Equality Panel

Women and Girls' Equality Panel

About Greater Manchester’s equality panels

The Greater Manchester Equality Panels have been established to advise, support and challenge Greater Manchester’s political leaders and policy-makers to tackle the discrimination and disadvantage that cause injustice and inequality in society, and champion Greater Manchester as an inclusive city-region. They do this by working together with the GMCA and partners to:

  • Provide insight into Greater Manchester’s diverse communities, enabling political leaders and public bodies to listen and engage in a more targeted and effective way
  • Communicate key messages to our communities as trusted sources
  • Codesign policies, programmes and strategies to ensure they work effectively for communities
  • Support an asset-based approach, highlighting new opportunities (and challenges) for positive collaboration that build on the resources and strengths within our communities

The Women and Girls’ Equality Panel is one of seven equality panels established and funded by the GMCA. Other equality panels include:

Disabled People’s Equality Panel

Faith and Belief Advisory Panel

LGBTQ+ Equality Panel

Race Equality Panel

Older People’s Equality Panel

Youth Combined Authority

Aims of the Women and Girls’ Equality Panel

The Women and Girls’ Equality Panel was established in December 2020. It aims to accelerate gender equality and ensure women and girls across Greater Manchester have their voices heard and influence GMCA policy and decision-making.

The Panel meets four times a year, and aims to:

  • Advise the Mayor and GMCA on key issues and the inequalities facing women and girls, and provide solutions
  • Provide a critical voice and scrutinise the work of the Mayor and GMCA
  • Undertake specific pieces of work to reduce the inequalities experienced by women and girls in the city-region and across society

Working groups

The Women and Girl’s Equality Panel currently has two working groups, which meet every 6-8 weeks:

Education, Skills and Employment: Key themes the group explores are the foundational economy, childcare, skills pathways, what ‘good employment’ means, women’s self-employment and co-operatives, as well as care and commissioning.

Violence and Women and Girls Working Group: Key areas of focus for the group include gender-based violence, women’s safety in public spaces, victim support, sexual objectification, and migrant women with No Recourse to Public Funds.

The working groups are open to anyone interested in these issues. If you would like to join, please email womenandgirls@pankhursttrust.org


The Women and Girl’s Equality Panel was formed after an open application process. Seventeen women were chosen by the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, and the portfolio lead for Equalities (at the time), Cllr Brenda Warrington, leader of Tameside Council. Panel members represent a diverse range of women and girls and all boroughs in our city-region. The selected members are joined by Bev Hughes, Deputy Mayor and Cllr Brenda Warrington.

Whilst the members operate in an individual capacity, many are also employed by organisations aiming to tackle issues experienced by women and girls. The members are:

Amy Rothwell, Boo Coaching & Consulting, Women’s Housing Action Group, Bolton Maternity Voices Partnership

Annie Emery, MASH (Manchester Action on Street Health)

Elizabeth Stanley, Wraparound Partnership

Francesca Gains, University of Manchester

Gail Heath, Pankhurst Trust

Gemma Aitchison, YES Matters

Halyma Begum (Chair)

Reverend Canon Jean Hurlston, Borough Dean for Oldham, Chaplain at Ashton Sixth Form College and Tameside Hospital

Lynne Stafford, Gaddum Centre

Memory Nyahunzwi, Olive Pathway 

Nadia Ali, Heaton Norris Community Centre and Make a Difference Community Group

Rebecca Steele, Rochdale & District Mind

Sandyha Sharma, Safety4Sisters North West

Sharon Maginn

Taslima Ahmed, Creative Design & Manufacture UK

Vic Stewart

Contact the Women and Girl’s Equality Panel

The Women and Girl’s Equality Panel is facilitated by The Pankhurst Trust. They can be contacted by emailing womenandgirls@pankhursttrust.org.

You can also keep up to date and get involved with the Women and Girl’s Equality Panel by following GM 4 Women 2028 on Twitter.

Women and Girls' Equality Panel - Annual Report 2021/22 (PDF, 288Kb)

(Accessible) Women and Girls' Equality Panel - Annual Report 2021/22 (.Docx, 208Kb)

Women and Girls' Equality Panel - Terms of Reference (PDF, 129KB)

Tackling gender and racial discrimination: A joint statement by GMCA, Mama Health & Poverty Partnership and Women's Resource Centre (PDF, 82KB)