Women in Australian parliaments

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Women's suffrage time capsule at Parliament House, Adelaide. 19 February 2012

Women in Australian parliaments

Posted 19/02/2014 by Joy McCann

A Parliamentary Library publication, Women parliamentarians in Australia 1921 ̶ 2013 written by Janet Wilson and David Black, has been updated to include women elected to federal, state and territory parliaments to 31 December 2013.

Part 1 consists of tables listing all women elected to Commonwealth, State and Territory parliaments since 1921. The lists are presented in chronological order of election and include the age at which the women took their seats, their party affiliation, electoral district represented, dates of service, and the way in which their period of service ended (whether they were defeated, retired, resigned, disqualified or died). Part 1 also includes a table showing women who have been Members of more than one Australian House of Parliament, and women elected to Australian parliaments classified according to the party of first endorsement. Part 2 includes lists of the women by the date of their election in 13 time periods: ten-year periods from 1921 to 1969, and five-year periods since 1970. The lists are followed by tables summarising the numbers elected since 1921, and the changing percentage of representation since 1970.

The information contained in the paper is accurate as at 31 December 2013. Since then, a by-election has been held for the federal seat of Griffith in Queensland in order to replace former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd (ALP) who resigned from the Australian Parliament on 22 November 2013. The by-election, held on 8 February 2014, resulted in the election of Terri Butler (ALP). This means that the number of women elected to the Australian House of Representatives has increased by one since 31 December 2013.

A number of parliamentary elections and by-elections are scheduled to be held in 2014. The Parliamentary Library will publish another update of this paper at the end of the year, and will also alert readers to changes as they occur during the year.

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