Young people reassured safety of women and girls high on Mayor's agenda

A group of young people from Girlguiding met the Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin to talk about issues affecting women and girls.

Mayor with Girlguiding Advocates

15th February 2024

A group of young people from Girlguiding met the Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin to talk about issues affecting women and girls. 

The three Girlguiding Advocates travelled to Leeds to discuss the results of the charity’s annual survey which gives girls the chance to the tell the world about the issues they face and the changes they want to see. 

Findings from the 15th Girls’ Attitudes Survey showed a large number of respondents have experienced upsetting behaviour online, worry about being sexually harassed or have faced criticism about their appearance.  

In turn, the Mayor outlined her pioneering Safety of Women and Girls Strategy, the Just Don’t campaign, which encourages men and boys to reflect on their own unacceptable behaviour, and the merits of the Ask for Angela initiative.  

The three Advocates who met the Mayor were Molly, 21, from the South West, Megan, 21, from Cymru and Lucy 16, from West Yorkshire. 

Lucy, who lives in Pontefract, said: "We were excited to meet Tracy Brabin and hear about the work she's doing to tackle violence against women and girls in West Yorkshire.  

“We particularly like the Just Don't campaign, which aims to educate young people about the harmful impact of sexual harassment.  

“We look forward to seeing the change this campaign and wider strategy brings and thank the Mayor for her ongoing commitment to put the voices of young people at the heart of her work in this important area." 

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin said: “The only way to bring about long-term change is to listen to the voices of women and girls. 

“We also want to encourage and empower them to challenge gender stereotypes both in and out of education settings. 

“I found it incredibly valuable to hear the Girlguiding Advocates’ insights on the safety of women and girls and protecting mental health. 

“They are amazing role models and I applaud their efforts.” 

The Advocates also touched on the Mayor’s and Deputy Mayor Alison Lowe’s lived experience and the power of being involved in work where there is a deep personal connection to improving the lives of women and girls. 

Girlguiding Advocates are a group of members aged 14-25 that lead the direction of the charitable organisation’s advocacy and research. Girlguiding’s team of advocates has been going for 15 years, which means 15 years of campaigning in Parliament, raising awareness of women’s and girls’ issues, and representing girls’ voices at a national level.

Photo Caption: (L-R): Girlguiding Advocates Megan, Lucy and Molly with Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin

About Girlguiding  

Girlguiding is the UK’s largest youth organisation dedicated completely to girls, with around 370,000 members. Girls can do anything. It helps them know that, whether they’re 4 or 18 or in between. All girls have a home at Girlguiding - whoever they are, and wherever they are. Girlguiding shows them a world of possibilities, big and small and helps them think big and be bold in a space where they can be themselves, get creative, explore, and have fun. It is a powerful collective voice – with girls, led by girls – changing the world for the better.   

They are 300,000 Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers, who come together to laugh, learn, explore and have adventures, in communities across the UK and virtually. They're 70,000 volunteers who make guiding happen by giving time, talent and enthusiasm. Registered Charity No 306016