Support for Women Threatened with Fines and Imprisonment

Support for women threatened with fines and imprisonment

Conference notes

1. That at several points in the Covid pandemic, schools have been forced to open for all students by the government despite the view of experts and unions that it has been unsafe for those attending and their families.

2. That the government has been encouraged in their bad decision-making, by the Leader of the Labour Party, for example writing in the Daily Mail ‘I don’t just want all our children back in school, I expect it. No ifs, no buts.’

3. Many parents, and in particularly mothers, have been deeply concerned about the potential impact of COVID spreading in schools on clinically vulnerable students and members of the family, and chosen to temporarily home school their children for this reason.

Conference believes that threats by authorities to withdraw school places, fine, prosecute or imprison mothers who have not sent their children into schools they believe to be unsafe are wrong. No parent who has kept their child home should be threatened or punished in this way. We stand in solidarity with all parents and school staff at this stressful time. We call on the Labour leadership to support:

• parents and unions campaigning for safer schools;

• parental choice regarding attendance;

• increased mental health support, resources and spaces for all children that need them.

We applaud women who as mothers and carers have shouldered the heaviest burdens in terms of childcare and home-schooling alongside formal work and other caring roles.