FiLiA were delighted to be present at a 50:50 Parliament campaigners event held in Westminster on Monday 6th February. FiLiA has supported 50:50 since its inception in 2013, with the Founder, Frances Scott and other team members speaking at many FiLiA conferences.

Frances said: "In just a few years we have come such a long way as a campaign - and now we're focusing on translating our success into success for women in local and national government.

“So going forward, our message to women is: have the confidence to stand for election, and give other women the confidence to stand as well.”

Since it began in 2013, 50:50 has been addressing the imbalance in Parliament and local government with their AskHerToStand campaign. Their first major success was the election of Rosie Duffield as MP for Canterbury in the 2017 election.

Over 100 women nationwide are now standing for election with the help of the #askhertostand campaign, which offers support and guidance to women through the electoral process.

Charlotte Salomon, a prospective candidate, said: “My own MP asked if I’d considered standing shortly after I joined the Conservatives in 2017. I’d never heard of the #askhertostand campaign and I didn’t give it much thought.

“I attended my first 50:50 event in 2018. I was met with support and encouragement, and the opportunity to ask MP’s real questions about life as a female member of the house. “50:50 holds a mirror up to women and asks “if not now, when?”.

There are currently two men for every woman in the House of Commons. At the current rate, parity in the lower house of parliament will not happen until 2050.

FiLiA stands with the 50:50 Parliament campaign and will continue to support them in 2019 and beyond. If you would like to stand as an MP, visit www.5050parliament.co.uk for more information.

by Adeline Chandler