NSW Local Government President, Darriea Turley, Welcomes Increase in Women’s Representation in Municipalities | Central Western Daily

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The election of three women to the city council will give Orange a more representative local government, said Darriea Turley, NSW local government chairperson. Orange is one of nearly 70 municipalities in the state to increase the number of female representatives on the city council in last year’s December 4 municipal elections. Jo McRae was the only woman on the council last term, but when we start the new term in 2022, Orange will have three female votes on its 12-member council. All first-term councilors, Tammy Greenhalgh, Frances Kinghorne and Mel McDonell, have been elected to the new Orange City Council, and that rise signals an increase in female representation across the state, Cr Turley said. The proportion of women in councils across NSW has been hovering around 27 to 31 percent for nearly a decade, but after the December 4 election, that percentage is now close to 40 percent. “Councils are the level of government closest to their community, so to make sure everyone has a voice, it’s important that they reflect the communities they represent,” she said. “It’s really worth celebrating to make such great strides in a single election.” Of the 124 councils that make up NSW, 69 now have more women on the council than in previous terms. Blayney is also one of them, with Michelle Pryse Jones elected to that county council. Blayney had no female representative during the last term of office. The Council of Cabone has four women in his room this term. They are Kathryn O’Ryan, Marlene Nash, Libby Oldham and Jenny Weaver. “An impressive 27 councils actually have a female majority, almost three times the number we saw in the last council term,” added Cr Turley. Cr Turley said the result follows a focused effort to increase community diversity, with LGNSW and ALGWA offering mentoring services and a range of development programs that provide practical information about leadership and the tools and techniques of successful political campaigning. Cr Turley said another major contributor to the higher proportion of women serving on the council was the introduction of a pension for mayors and councillors, bringing them in line with the rest of the Australian workforce. She added that 2022 would be a challenging year for NSW as councils sought to assist in a locally-led recovery from the economic impact of the COVID pandemic. “While the council can be difficult, it’s really worth it, and you’re surrounded by a lot of support,” she said. Our journalists work hard to provide local, current news to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our trusted content:


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