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Who runs the world, girls: Nearly every major political party now led by a woman
May 11th 2015
Bar the Conservatives, every major UK political party is currently led by a woman, and we like it!
While you may or may have not been pleased with the outcome of the recent general election, there was one surprising result that is sure to please many across the country; every major political party in the UK, except the Conservatives, is now led by a woman.
Harriet Harman and Suzanne Evans stepped in following the resignation of Labour’s Ed Miliband and UKIP’s Nigel Farage respectively, while Nicola Sturgeon, Leann Wood and Natalie Bennett currently head up the SNP, Plaid Cymru and Green Party. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats – whose leader Nick Clegg stood down yesterday following their worst defeat since 1957 – are technically led by party president Sarah Brinton.
In particular, the SNP’s Nicola Sturgeon looks set to dominate British politics for the next five years and although Leanne Wood’s burst of publicity on the national stage failed to translate into votes, her leadership of Plaid Cymru appears secure.
Over the past few years the number of female MP’s has risen by one third, and is set to continue rising thanks to the increase in more female focused political parties. Indeed, Comedian Sandi Toksvig announced earlier this week that she will be leaving her BBC Radio 4 News Quiz to found a new political party."It's called the Women's Equality Party. It is a fantastic group of women - and indeed men - who have decided that enough is enough and we need to make some changes.They are not fielding candidates in the 2015 general election but will do so in five years time,” she said.
"The world is in a parlous state," she said, adding that 9.1 million women did not vote in the last election. "We need to attract them. We also need to attract the more than seven million men who didn't vote. There's a huge issue. Women are certainly not equal. How is it that we still have a pay gap? What is it, 45 years since the Equal Pay Act?
"On average for part-time work, women are paid 35% less than men. How is that possible? Ten per cent less in full-time employment. It's the Women's Equality Party because unless we access all the talents in this country we're not going to succeed. Equality's better for everybody."
While these changes mark a positive move forward for more equal gender representation in politics, recent statistics revealed by 50:50 Parliament following the 2015 general election demonstrated there is still a long way to go.
“After #GE2015 men outnumber women 2:1 in the House of Commons. Only around 190 seats will be taken by women, that is 29% of the total. The 32 million UK women remain significantly under-represented.They are 51% of the population, 51% of experience, expertise and talent. 102 constituencies had no women standing. This is a structural problem. Debate and action is needed to get better gender balance in Parliament. The effects would ripple out across society. As Helen Pankhurst says: "Keep up the pressure!" Sign and share change.org/5050Parliament”