PREMIER FAILS TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF LIBERAL PARTY’S PROBLEM WITH FEMALE MPs
The Premier has refused to explain why she has failed to stand up for sitting female MPs who are facing challenges from men in pre-selection battles.
After several days of Premier Berejiklian trying to broker a deal to accommodate two men - her Treasurer and her Minister for Multiculturalism – she was silent in the NSW Parliament on why she didn’t use her position as leader to do the same for her female colleagues.
Just 22 per cent of NSW Liberal MPs are female but at least four are facing preselection challenges from men, including Eleni Petinos and Felicity Wilson. The Upper House is not immune, with Catherine Cusack and Natasha McLaren-Jones also likely to face challenges by men for their seats.
It is clear the Liberals have a problem with women.
Last week, Liberal Member for Kiama Gareth Ward was named as a ‘destabiliser’ by Federal Liberal MP Ann Sudmalis which has only further exacerbated the problem of the party attracting and retaining female MPs.
The toxic culture of bullying and failure to recruit female representation within the Federal Liberal Government comes at a time when there are less female Liberal MPs in Federal parliament compared to the number during the Howard Government.
The number of Liberal women in both the federal and state parliaments could be reduced to its lowest number since the early 1990s.
By comparison, almost 40 percent of NSW Labor MPs are female while the Shadow Cabinet comprises of 40 percent women. Almost half of Federal Labor MPs are women.
Quotes attributable to Acting Shadow Minister for Women Jenny Aitchison
“When the Member for Kiama was accused of being a bully - the Premier stood by him. When her male senior MPs embarked on a seat stoush, the Premier stood by them.
“It speaks volumes of the Premier’s leadership when she intervenes in one pre-selection stoush and not the other. She ‘fixes’ it for the men but the women, well, you’re on your own.
“The Premier should be showing leadership and promoting the women in her party, not allowing sitting MPs to be rolled by male candidates.”