HC Deb 28 June 1999 vol 334 cc46-7W
Sir Richard Body

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many meetings he has had with the Standing Conference of Women's Organisations in the last 12 months; and how many he had in the previous 12 months. [87646]

Ms Jowell

On 16 September 1997, I presented Mimi Johnson, representing the Standing Conference of Women's Organisations, with the Commonwealth Award for Excellence in Women's Health. There have been no other meetings between Ministers and the Standing Conference of Women's Organisations (SCWO) in the past 24 months.

As a member of the Women's National Commission, the Government's official advisory body for women, SCWO has the opportunity to participate in consultation on specific issues requested by Government Departments, and to input their concerns on any other matters.

The Government are particularly grateful to SCWO for their help in publicising and promoting the Listening to Women campaign.

Representatives from the SCWO participated in regional events in Manchester (22 February 1999), Birmingham (26 March 1999), Reading (21 May 1999), and the International Women's Day Meeting in London on 8 March 1999, which were held as part of the Listening to Women consultation exercise. These meetings enabled a wide range of women to speak face to face with Government and were attended by either my noble Friend the Baroness Jay or myself, in our role of Ministers for Women.