Rather than being a beauty pageant, it’s billed as “an evening of celebration to highlight gender imbalance in public life in Northern Ireland [and] give women an opportunity to voice the changes they would like to see happen now and for the future”.
The lack of women in Northern Irish Public life should be of great concern to all, not least to our public representatives. To try and raise awareness of this problem you are cordially invited to attend our Alternative Ms Ulster event, being held at Parliament Buildings, the heart of decision making in Northern Ireland, on International Women’s Day.
The lack of women in the NI Assembly is was the subject of a post this time last year in which a quote from Bronagh Hinds’ book Everyday Life After the Irish Conflict: The Impact of Devolution and Cross-Border Cooperation explained:
However, at the current rate of progress it would take sixteen election cycles, about sixty-five years, for women to become 50 per cent of MLAs, and thirteen elections, spanning fifty-two years, to reach gender balance in councils.
The Green Party explain that Parliament’s Buildings’ Great Hall “has a grand marble staircase that has been used as the backdrop for many historic photo opportunities in the past”. The event promises to give women the opportunity to walk down the to take to this staircase to a podium and deliver a brief statement of what they would like to see happen or change in Northern Ireland to benefit the lives and welfare of women.
Nuala McKeever will be
commèring, and the organisers hope that Stiff Little Fingers will round up the evening with a rendition of their infamous song, Alternative Ulster. Advance registration is required. Oh, and there’s wine upon arrival! compèring