These are areas where, while the law itself is not gender-biased, its application is. Sometimes this is in the allocation of funds.
Imbalances disadvantaging women.
None that Equi-law UK is aware of.
Imbalances disadvantaging men.
Imbalanced in application
|Non-molestation orders NMO||During 2017 over 22,500 NMOs were granted to women, but fewer than 1800 to men. These can prevent fathers seeing their children simply based on an accusation. 1Many are ’emergency orders’: the recipient is only notified after the order is granted.|
|Access to legal aid in divorce||Only available when there is an accusation of abuse – and then only to the accuser. Often NMOs are used as a method to obtain legal aid.|
|Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO)||Before the Act, approx 40% of legal aid was given to men and 60% to women. After the Act it is now 15% to men and 85% to women.|
|Contact with children after separation||Over 90% of parents who are not living with their children are men.|
|Court ordered divorce settlements||Unfairly generous to the female. 2If children are involved, they will usually be given to the mother and the family assets will be split more generously towards the woman – typically 75-25. In addition, the man will have to pay child support in most cases, and maybe have to support the woman for the rest of her life, or until she remarries.|
|Housing benefit||The father may only be allowed enough for single room – so cannot have his children to stay|
|Tax credits, family allowance, etc|| Predominantly paid to the mother. |
3Child benefit child, working tax credit and universal credit are paid only on the primary carer – it cannot be split (even in shared care cases ). Over 90% of the claimants are women.
|Refuge places||4A refuge is a place of safety for a victim of domestic violence and is a place to live (including children). There are over 3500 refuge places for women from 269 providers, but only 34 places ring-fenced for men.|
|Homeless shelters||5A shelter is place to sleep and perhaps get something to eat for homeless people (no children allowed). The majority of users are men as 85% of rough sleepers are male.6 Homeless Link data|
|Terms of imprisonment|| Compared to women, men are nearly twice as likely to be sent to prison for the same offence and are given a sentence 50% longer. 7Unlike men, women:|
* are usually imprisoned near their family
* are allowed to have their children with them
* are allowed to wear their own clothes
* are less likely to need to share a cell
|Funding for ‘gender imbalanced’ careers||There are dozens of schemes aimed at assisting women into STEM and other male-dominated careers. There are none for men in careers dominated by women (eg primary school teaching, psychology etc).|
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We are not aiming to give a comprehensive, detailed account of the imbalances here, simply some headlines which illustrate the imbalance.