Jeremy Corbyn has suggested that an end to “early evening socialisation” would help working mothers who are excluded by their childcare responsibilities.
Speaking at an evening event to launch his equal rights for women policy, Mr Corbyn said:
“The behaviour of companies that encourage an ethic of early-evening socialisation to promote themselves within the company benefits men who don’t feel the need to be at home looking after their children, and it discriminates against women who want to obviously look after the children they’ve got.”
Mr Corbyn’s comments have received some public criticism. Summarising this criticism in an interview with LBC, Matt Chorley, the political editor of The Times, said:
“[Mr Corbyn] then went on to say it benefited men who don’t feel the need to be at home with their children and discriminates against women who will want to, obviously, look after the children they have.
“So he manages to offend almost everyone by suggesting that being at home with your children is a job for women and that dads aren’t bothered about seeing their children these days. They’re the ones that are quite happy about being in the pub.”
Others were concerned that Mr Corbyn appeared to be calling for a ban on after work drinks with colleagues.
However, a spokesperson for the Labour Leader said in response:
“Clearly this was not what Jeremy was suggesting, he instead highlighted a concern among many women’s groups and the head of the CBI that a male-led after work networking culture in some workplaces can be detrimental to the career progression of female co-workers who can feel excluded, especially those women with caring responsiblities.”