Women’S Suffrage Centenary

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:14 pm on 6th February 2018.

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Photo of Jess Phillips Jess Phillips Labour, Birmingham, Yardley 1:14 pm, 6th February 2018

Let me wish everyone a happy feminist Christmas, which is what today feels like. I started the morning at 8.45 with everyone dressed in their Sunday best, and it genuinely feels like a happy moment in this place to celebrate something genuinely happy.

Following what the Home Secretary has just said about abuse, I have a suggestion for her that would make Labour women very happy. If she is hearing the concerns of Labour women, she could say today that she will do the following, and it will make Labour women very happy. When I see metro mayors and police and crime commissioners, I do not notice that any of them looks particularly like me. There is a huge problem with the representation of women in that regard. There is a very simple thing that the Government could agree to do today: they could agree to allow all-women shortlists to be used and agree to add a provision to the Equality Act 2010 so that they could be used for those positions. At present, it is illegal for the Labour party to use all-women shortlists. If the Home Secretary would like to do Labour women a solid, that is the one that we would ask for today.