All-women shortlists

Published Tuesday, December 18, 2012

This note looks at the background to the Sex Discrimination (Election Candidates) Act 2002 which allowed political parties to draw up all-women shortlists of candidates for elections; and its extension. It gives details of Labour candidates selected through all-women shortlists and methods of positive action used by the main political parties to increase the number of women MPs.

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This note looks at the background to the Sex Discrimination (Election Candidates) Act 2002 which allowed political parties to draw up all-women shortlists of candidates for elections; gives details of Labour candidates selected through all-women shortlists and methods of positive action by the main political parties to increase the number of women MPs. The Act included a “sunset clause” – the Act would expire at the end of 2015, unless extended.

The Equality Act 2010 extended the period in which all-women shortlists may be used until 2030.

This Note provides some information on the use of all-women shortlists by the Labour Party and reviews approaches adopted by other political parties to increase the number of women candidates and elected representatives.

Commons Briefing papers SN05057

Authors: Richard Kelly; Isobel White

Topics: Elections, Equality, General elections, Members of Parliament, Parliament, Political parties, Sex discrimination

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