Mitchel McLaughlin hails hike in female Members
The 50% rise in women elected to the Assembly has been welcomed by former Speaker Mitchel McLaughlin.
The ex-Sinn Fein MLA made female representation at Stormont one of his platform issues.
Last week 30 female Members were elected, compared to 20 in 2011. "While we still have a long way to match the 51% of the population who are female, this is nonetheless a significant rate of progress," Mr McLaughlin said.
"I particularly look forward to the contribution that significant female presence will make. The welcome uplift in the number of women will be beneficial to those bodies as they attempt to encourage more women and consider the barriers which may exist.
"The need for female representation is now clearly on the political agenda, but it will be vitally important to keep it there to ensure that the reduction of numbers at the next election does not disproportionately reduce female representation."