Looking ahead to 2021 and beyond, are you ready to get selected and elected? Tell 50:50 Parliament what you plan to do next.
By Sarah Tomlin
Parliament is now in recess for Summer 2020 but that doesn’t mean that everything stops until September 1st. Obviously the country is still in the grip of the coronavirus pandemic and local councillors, mayors and MPs up and down the country are working hard to prepare their communities for the return to school, and maybe office life, in the Autumn.
The Summer recess is also a great time to plan YOUR political future. It is never too early to think about future selections and elections. Here at 50:50 Parliament we have put together a full list of the upcoming elections in 2021 and 2022 – see table below.
|Elections May 2021||Elections May 2022|
|Police and Crime Commissioners across 40 regions (England and Wales)||Local Government, including 32 London Boroughs (England)|
|Scottish Parliament across 129 seats (Scotland)||Sheffield Metro Mayor|
|Welsh Senedd across 60 seats (Wales)||Northern Ireland Local Government|
|London Mayor and 25 members of Greater London Assembly (England)||Scottish Local Government|
|Combined and Single Authority Mayors in 12 areas (England)||Welsh Local Government|
|County Councils in 24 regions (England)|
|Local Authority Councils in 160 areas (England)|
We know that some of you have already been selected for 2021 elections – especially if you had selections for 2020 that have been carried over. Please send Natasha our campaign coordinator an email, firstname.lastname@example.org, so 50:50 can make sure you are getting the right support.
Many more of you will still be developing your political ambitions – if you need advice on how best to prepare for selection and election, then #SignUpToStand with 50:50 right now!
In many of these elected bodies, women are still outnumbered by men. There has never been a directly elected female metro mayor for example. Even today, the number of local councillors across England who are women is 36%, very similar to the number of female MPs at 34%. Women are also 36% of Members of the Scottish Parliament and 34% of the Northern Ireland Assembly. We need more women at every level and in every possible corner of UK political life.
Other areas of the UK are doing much better in terms of gender balance: 47% of the Welsh Senedd are women. Currently, 40% of members of the London Assembly are women. Let’s hope it stays that way, or increases in 2021.
Our team of #AskHerToStand Directors have links with all the parties and are always ready to help with suggestions of what to do next. We know that women need to be asked THREE times more often than men before deciding to stand. Start talking to your friends and family this Summer and ask them what they think. If they say yes, you should go for it! We are ready to support you.
How it works
Here at 50:50 Parliament we have run a campaign since 2013 to encourage more women to become politicians.
Our main focus is the Sign Up To Stand campaign, whereby women can declare their intention to stand on our website. From the start of lockdown we have seen more than 200 women joining our campaign; there are now over 1400 women who have chosen to Sign Up To Stand.
The next step is converting those who sign up into candidates for the next local or general election. This is where our New Girls Network and buddy support system kicks in. Each women who comes to #SignUpToStand with 50:50 is sent their own Personal Political Profile, which gives guidance on the next steps to take. By matching women with a peer from their political party – women supporting women – they start on a journey that can lead to Westminster.
We know this works. In the last general election, 50 women who were inspired by our campaign were selected as candidates (many for the very first time) and 9 of those women are now MPs in Westminster.
If you are one of the 1400 women who have Signed Up To Stand we want to get YOU selected and elected in 2021 and 2022.
Don’t delay, email your details and the election you are interested in to: email@example.com
We will be back in the Autumn with our regular weekly BiteSize Zoom events and our large monthly ZOOM events in September, October and November. They will always be on the 21st of each month so please mark your calendars now!
Have a fabulous and fearless Summer 🙂
Sarah Tomlin, 50:50 coordinator for Equal Power