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Small Increase in Irish Women TDs

1 Mar, 2011

The new Irish Dail will be 15.1% female – up from 13.9% before the election. This is a increase of 2 women to 25, and has happened despite a drop in the level of women candidates and fears that there would also be a fall in the number of women elected.

Fine Gael, now the largest party, has 11 women TDs (14.4%), whilst the outgoing Fianna Fail, which suffered a crushing defeat, now has no women TDs at all.

8 of Labour’s 37 TDs are women – 21.6%. Both Fine Gael and Labour took some steps to ensure that there were a reasonable number of women candidates.

Sinn Fein, which won 14 seats, has 2 women (14.3%), whilst the Green Party lost all its TDs, including its only woman. 2 Independent women were elected, and 2 belonging to smaller parties.

Party

No. Seats

No. Women

% Women

Fine Gael

76

11

14.4%

Labour

37

8

21.6%

Fianna Fail

20

0

0%

Independent

15

2

13.3%

Sinn Fein

14

2

14.3%

Green Party

0

0

0%

Others

4

2

50%

All

166

25

15.1%

Although this result is rather better than had been anticipated, it still keeps Ireland towards the bottom of the European league table, with only six EU countries - Slovakia (15.3%), Slovenia (14.4%), Cyprus (12.5%), Romania (11.4%), Hungary (9.1%) and Malta (8.7%) – having a lower percentage of women legislators.

At 22%, the UK now lies 12th in the list of EU nations, ahead of Italy (21.3%) and France (18.9%) but behind the Netherlands (40.7%), Spain (36.6%) and Germany (32.8%).

It remains to be seen how many women are appointed to the new FineGael/Labour coalition cabinet.