26 September 2023

Local government election a test for diversity

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Women and people from multicultural communities are being encouraged to stand for the 2022 Local Government Election as a recent review has found the gender ratios in councils were tipped towards men.

Leading the call for increased diversity, Minister for Local Government, Geoff Brock said that currently out of South Australia’s 68 councils, 37 per cent of mayors and 21 per cent of Chief Executives (CEOs) were female, with only 10 per cent of councils having both a female mayor and CEO.

Mr Brock said people from all walks of life, genders, backgrounds and cultures would more accurately represent the makeup of society.

“Our local councils can only be strengthened by greater diversity in our elected officials, including a greater gender balance and increased representation of people who reflect our multicultural, age diverse, inclusive communities, so that council decisions made on behalf of their communities more accurately reflect the communities they serve,” he said.

“Councillors have a direct say on issues that impact their local community’s everyday lives and I encourage every eligible South Australian to get involved in this year’s Local Government elections, either by nominating as a candidate or making sure you’re enrolled to vote.”

Minister for Women and the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Katrine Hildyard encouraged any woman who was passionate about her community to nominate for the elections.

“Seeing women in elected positions will only further motivate future generations of women to themselves run for public office or to put themselves forward to participate in our economy and community in whichever way they choose,” Ms Hildyard said.

The close of electoral role for the Local Government Election is Friday 29 July, nominations for council open on Tuesday 23 August and further information can be accessed on the Electoral Commission of South Australia website at this PS News link.

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