Candidates and diversity

The Tories are claiming a partial success for their campaign to get more female and minority ethnic candidates. Since David Cameron became leader, 32% of newly selected candidates were female and 9% from minority ethnic communities. The Tories plan to go further by introducing 50/50 gender balanced shortlists and increasing the proportion of women on their ‘A’ list of candidates from 50% to 60%, in what they describe as “positive action”. However, what are the locals parties doing and what should they be doing to address the issue?In terms of the top positions, only 3 of the 18 MPs are women (2 Unionist and 1 Nationalist) and 16 out of the 108 MLA’s (4 Unionist, 2 Alliance and 10 Nationalist). There is no minority ethnic politician at a senior or council level (AFAIK).