The position of Minister for Women was created by Tony Blair when he became prime minister as a means of prioritising women's issues across government. Prior to that, there had been an equality unit in the Cabinet Office and a Cabinet committee, which were continued under the leadership of the new minister. When Gordon Brown succeeded Blair, he created the post of Minister for Women and Equality to handle a wider range of equalities issues. The first Minister for Women and, ten years later, the first Minister for Women and Equality was Harriet Harman. On 12 October 2007 a new department, the Government Equalities Office was created to support the minister. When David Cameron became prime minister, he gave the position its current name without a change in its responsibilities. Since its creation, the position has always been held by a minister sitting in Cabinet by virtue of another office (i.e., a Secretary of State or Leader of one of the Houses of Parliament).
Justine Greening replaced Nicky Morgan as both Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities when Theresa May was appointed Prime Minister on 13 July 2016. Morgan initially held the title of Minister for Women after the resignation of Maria Miller in April 2014, in conjunction with being Financial Secretary to the Treasury, whilst the Equalities brief was given to Sajid Javid who had replaced Miller as Secretary of State for Culture. While the Women and Equalities briefs were recombined in July 2014, the responsibility for marriage equality was assigned to Nick Boles, who held the title of Minister of State for Skills, Enterprise and Equalities and had a base in both the Education and Business departments. Both splits in responsibilities were due to Nicky Morgan having voted against the legalisation of gay marriage.
Lord Northbourne has called for the creation of a minister to concentrate on issues specific to men.
Minister for Equalities