Towcester news: Opinion divided over gender ban

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OPINIONS were divided in Towcester this week as shoppers gave their reactions to a ruling which forces insurance companies to scrap gender bias.

This week the European Court of Justice ruled insurance could no longer take into account gender when calculating insurance premiums.

The Association of British Insurers predict the ruling wills see a 25 per cent premium increase for women under 25 and a 10 per cent fall for men.

Opinion in Towcester was split with half saying they agreed with the ban and that premiums should be calculated on driving ability and not gender.

Claire Plumb, a 45-year-old house wife from Jenkinson Road in Towcester said: “Initially I was quite annoyed because I think 70 per cent of accidents are caused by men. I don’t think insurance companies should not discriminate. They should look at individual cases. I’m basically happy about it, society is too large and diverse to generalise.”

48-year-old engine builder Simon Pallister from Blisworth said: “I thought insurance companies based their calculations on statistics. And if statistically there is a gender bias why should they be forced to remove it. Men are more aggressive, and women are more careful, but I don’t think women have the spacial awareness of men. But men think they are better drivers than they are and get into situations they can’t deal with.”

Max Crook, a 35-year-old retailer manager from Stoke Bruerne said: “I think it is really well meaning, but I think it is unnecessary. The intention’s great but what are the financial consequences? I think a principle has got in the way of the facts.”

His wife Emma Crook, a 32-year-old administration manager also disagreed with ruling. She said: “There are a lot other factors insurers take in to account, like where you live. But if it is proven women have less accidents then I don’t seen why gender should not be taken into account.”

Liz Reading, 58, retired from Cold Ashby said: “Anything that removes gender bias is a good thing. Female drivers do get a better premium but I don’t there should be discrimination in any part of society, based on gender or age. A 65-year-old first time driver could be just as dangerous at a 17-year-old driver.”

Leanne Howson, a 29-year-old dance instructor from Northampton said: “I think it’s only fair. I think ladies would like to be considered equally to men. People who drive more are more likely to have an accident but premiums should be based on driving ability not whether you are male or female.”