Fact: More than 50 per cent of the Canadian population is comprised of women.
Fact: Women represent only approximately 30 per cent of members of municipal and city councils. In fact only 19 per cent of mayors are women, while the vast majority of councils are dominated by men.
These are numbers that need to be considered and changed.
In 2018, Princeton elected one woman councillor out of four – so 25 per cent.
One woman was acclaimed to the office in the previous term.
Keremeos has had one woman councillor, our of four, for the last term as well.
Summerland has a woman mayor, and two of its six councillors are women.
In Penticton two of six councillors are women.
Seven of the 19 directors of the Regional District of the South Okanagan are women and one is a former chair.
The disparities are not accidental, obviously.
Only 30 per cent of Canadian MPs are women as well. However, women account for 42.5 per cent of MLAs in British Columbia.
There are social, historic, structural, economic and psychological barriers to women entering politics.
Naturally there are studies that break down the issues, and organizations that address them, offer support and encourage women to be interested in politics and run for office.
Government is intended to represent the people – all the people.
Specific to a municipal council, its members should reflect the makeup of the community.
There is much to be gained from diversity.
At the very least a more even gender balanced council would help avoid the ‘group think’ trap, and would provide fresh points of view.
Think about it.
Nomination papers are now available at your local town or city hall.
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