Press Release: David Mundell MP confirms devolution of gender quotas

David Mundell MP confirms devolution of gender quotas

Ahead of presenting to the Devolution Committee tomorrow, Women 5050 welcomes David Mundell MP’s comments, and reiterates its call for Westminster to fully and clearly devolve the ability to introduce legislated gender quotas to Scotland.

In a letter to the Devolution Committee, Secretary of State for Scotland, David Mundell MP has written:

“The Smith Commission Agreement was clear that Scottish Ministers and Scottish Parliament should have competence for socio-economic inequality and duties that attach to that. The Smith Commission agreed that the 2010 Equality Act should remain reserved, and the subject matter of the 2006 Equality Act falls within the scope of the equal opportunities reservation. That is why the clause is clear on this point. The clause provides a framework within which the Scottish Parliament can introduce additional equal opportunities measures, including gender quotas.”

Talat Yaqoob, Founder and Chair of Women 5050 said:

“We welcome the opportunity to present evidence to the Devolution Committee. Almost 60% of the parliaments across the world use some form of gender quota to increase women’s representation and tackle institutionalised inequality, the campaign will be using this platform to push for the Scottish Parliament to follow their example.

I am particularly pleased to see that David Mundell MP agrees with the need to address the underrepresentation of women and has stated that gender quotas will be fully devolved. What we need now is absolute clarity on this issue, so that Scotland can lead the way by not only introducing quotas on public boards, but legislating for candidate quotas in the Scottish Parliament and local council elections. We have the support of First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the leaders of the Scottish Labour Party, Scottish Green Party and Scottish Liberal Democrats, there is a clear mandate for quotas to be devolved and implemented as soon as possible.”

ENDS.

Notes to Editor:

  1. For more information please contact Talat Yaqoob on 07795575446
  2. The full text of David Mundell MP letter can be read here; http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/2015.08.27_Letter_from_S_of_S_following_25_June_meeting.pdf
  3. 55 MSPs now back the Women 5050 campaign (100% from the Scottish Greens, 95% from Scottish Labour, 25% from the SNP, 40% from the Scottish Liberal Democrats and 0% from the Scottish Conservatives). Full list is available here: http://www.women5050.org/add-your-support.html
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