By Will Stone in Britain:
Women ‘still missing from top jobs’
Monday 25 February 2013
Campaigners revealed yesterday that Britain is shamefully plummeting down the league tables when it comes to women’s representation in politics and public life.
Three-quarters of MPs, 90 per cent of bank chief executives, almost 90 per cent of chief constables and police and crime commissioners and two-thirds of local councillors are men, the group said.
Women representation in British politics is declining so much that the country has dropped from rank 33 out of 190 countries in 2001 to 57th place in February, according to the Inter Parliamentary Union league table.
The group, which includes the Centre for Women and Democracy, the Electoral Reform Society, the Fawcett Society, the Hansard Society and Unlock Democracy, is warning that the situation will continue to deteriorate unless committed action is taken.
They are calling on political parties to take steps to ensure an increase in the number of female candidates fielded in winnable seats at all levels of politics.
Fawcett Society’s chief executive Ceri Goddard said it was “simply scandalous” that in 2013 men still outnumber women four to one in Parliament.
She said: “If political parties don’t take urgent action, Britain will continue to fall down the global league table when it comes to women’s access to power and representation in politics.”
Women are similarly missing in many other spheres of public life, representing just 13.6 per cent of senior judiciary and 5 per cent of editors of national daily newspapers, the group said.
And they found the absence of women particularly marked in finance with none on the Bank of England‘s monetary policy committee, just 11.1 per cent of chief executives of British banks and 17.3 per cent of FTSE 100 director positions.
Counting Women In warned this lack of diversity in public life weakened democracy and public confidence in it as well as having a negative effect on decision-making itself.
Unlock Democracy deputy director Alex Runswick said: “Our democracy and public life is weaker because it misses the skills experience and talents of over half the population.”
- Women losing ground in positions of power, report reveals (guardian.co.uk)
- Report finds shocking absence of women from UK public life (guardian.co.uk)
- It’s a man’s world: Number of women in positions of power plummets as female representation goes into reverse (thisismoney.co.uk)
- UK Media Roundup: Lib Dem sex harassment scandal. Cameron needs to ‘man up’, says Harriet Harman. Labour on opportunities for older women in public life. (psawomenpolitics.wordpress.com)
- How David Cameron can get more women into politics | Sarah Wollaston (guardian.co.uk)
- British women’s pay discrimination (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)