Analysis by Fawcett Society and Democracy Club and reported in The Guardian has shown that men dominate 95% of local authorities in Britain and only 33% of local councillors are women. Labour has the best proportion of councillors who are women, with 47%, but this is still not enough.
Progress has been unacceptably slow. In 1999, I published a report on the under-representation of women in Local Authorities, which found that only 27% of councillors are women. This means that in 24 years, the total of women councillors has increased by a mere 6%. You can read my report here.
This matters because women are still not fully represented in our local democracy. Yet they are active in their local communities, as governors of local schools, as members of PTAs, and in tenants and residents associations. They are the majority of those employed in Council services, and the biggest users of those services.
Women are still being held back from making the step into democratic politics and until this changes there will remain a democratic deficit.