HC Deb 24 June 1998 vol 314 cc556-8W
Jackie Ballard

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will place in the Library copies of gender impact assessments which have been undertaken in respect of legislation introduced in this Parliament; if he will make it his policy to do so in respect of future legislation; and if he will make a statement. [47021]

Ms Ruddock

The gender perspective in policy making is being addressed through the cross-Departmental mainstreaming initiative which the Ministers for Women launched on 18 May. We have consulted widely in the formulation of new guidelines. These guidelines will require Departments to: consider how policy proposals affect women; consult with women's organisations where appropriate; and to take action where the differential impact is not justifiable.

The Ministers for Women intend to publish an Annual Report to Parliament setting out progress on mainstreaming the women's perspective into Government policy-making. The first report will be published after the end of this financial year.