More? Women. Now?

7/8 of the women in the 2015 Queensland Cabinet - Coralee O'Rourke isn't in this shot

7/8 of the women in the 2015 Queensland Cabinet – Coralee O’Rourke isn’t in this shot

Very few people will disagree that politics needs to be more representative of the community – if we were truly choosing candidates on merit we would see more women politicians, more indigenous Australians, more migrants and their descendants, and proportionately fewer middle-aged, heterosexual, anglo men*.

After the 2015 Queensland State election, the Labor side of the Queensland Parliament is 37% women.  Overall the Queensland Parliament is 28% women.

Plus, Queensland has a woman Premier, a woman Deputy Premier, and eight out of 14 Cabinet members are women.  Overall, this is a world record: as far as I can find, never before in the history of Parliamentary democracy have elections thrown up a Government in which women are so strongly represented.

Never. Before.**

When Finland formed its 73rd Government eight months before the Palaszczuk Government took office, they had a majority of women in Cabinet.  I’m claiming a win for Queensland and Australia on the strength of women holding the two most senior positions*** while in Finland the Prime Minister and Deputy are men.

(The Bolivian Legislative Assembly is 49% women, Rwanda has 64%, Andorra has 50.0 %, Cuba 49% and Seychelles 44%:

So why isn’t the Queensland Government, at least, championing the current extraordinary crew of women role models in State Parliament, to encourage more diverse involvement in civic issues?


* Such as me.  We need less of me.  I’m over-represented in politics.
** If I’m wrong, tell me now, OK – my research resources are good, but not unlimited.
*** Finnophiles might argue that theirs is a national Government and Queensland’s is but a state, but my point is about the capacity of the democratic system to elect women leaders.


About Mike Smith

Partner in Ethical Consulting Services:; Ethical strategies and programs which get you where you need to go ... * Exceptional government & stakeholder relations, * Thriving governance systems, * Specialised project facilitation, * Inbound investment assistance, * Successful marketing, communications and PR campaigns ... and customised training in each of these areas.

Posted on April 29, 2015, in Change, Culture, Culture change, Democracy, Election, Leadership, Politics, Queensland, Queensland Government, Women and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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