SEE Her Elected, the award-winning Government funded project which aims to encourage women from rural areas to engage in local politics are collaborating with Clare County Council for an upcoming event to promote and support greater involvement by women from diverse backgrounds in Local Government.
‘Promoting Gender Equality & Diversity in Local Government’, will take place on Tuesday, May 17 from 10.30am to 2pm in Glór, Ennis and will include a panel discussion with local and national politicians as well as speakers from diverse groups.
County Clare’s first ever female TD Madeline Taylor Quinn will be the keynote speaker on the day. Other speakers on the day will include Noeleen Fitzgerald, Director of Finance & Support Services, Clare County Council; Dr Michelle Maher of See Her Elected; Senator Roisin Garvey; Mayor of the Ennis Municipal District Councillor Ann Norton; as well as Bridget Casey, CLDC & Traveller community rep; Teresa O’Donogue, Clare PPN, Community activist; Ann Marie Flanagan, Regional Development Officer, SHINE voice for disability and Elaine Dalton, Project Co-Ordinator for Womens Collective Ireland as well as a range of speakers representing the migrant and disability sector.
Details of the See Her Elected ‘Introduction to Politics’ course for County Clare women will also be unveiled on the day. The SHE programme is a rural strategy to address the under-representation of women in politics in rural Ireland.
The ‘Introduction to Politics’ course for County Clare women runs for free on Zoom over two consecutive weeks on Monday, May 23 and May 30 as a follow up to the in person seminar.
The ‘Introduction to Politics’ course from the See Her Elected Project aims to empower women in County Clare to engage in electoral politics. The free online SHESchool course is for anyone who wants to start to build up a bit of knowledge about what politics is and how politics works.
The classes will run twice on each date in a bid to fit into day-to-day life with a morning option from 11-12.30pm and an evening option from 7.30-9p.m.
“We want to see more women being elected to county councils. Our free online #SHESchool which is all about explaining local politics, where you fit in, and what you can do to have a say in what goes on.
“Only 26% of county councillors throughout Ireland are female and we have a much lower percentage of female councillors in rural counties compared to more urban centres such as Dublin.”
“There are only four women out of 28 councillors on Clare County Council and it was 1979 before women were first elected to Clare County Council when Madeline Taylor and Patricia McCarthy were elected.
“In total only nine women have ever been elected. It is important to have a female perspective at decision making level as this will ensure more balanced decisions are made on a range of issues which matter to us as women whether that’s climate change, employment, parenting, care or violence against women for example.
“There are two classes to this introduction to Politics- the first one will cover Active Citizenship and Public Participation in council decision making while the second class will focus on ‘Who does what in the Council’ and the role of a county councillor,” explains Dr Michelle Maher, Programme Manager with SHE.
“We would love to see as many women as possible attending the live event in Ennis on Tuesday, May 17 when they will have the opportunity to hear from a range of diverse speakers in local and national politics while also hearing more about the work of See Her Elected and the upcoming Free ‘Introduction to Politics’ classes,” continued Dr Maher.
Tickets for the event in Glór, Ennis on Tuesday, May 17 are free of charge but those interested in attending must register on the Glór website at: https://glor.ie/…/promoting-gender-equality-diversity…/