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Nipsa can show support for women's rights in vote

JUDENA Leslie, the new Commissioner for Public Appointments, in an interview with the BBC's The View, highlighted the unacceptable situation whereby there are still too few women being appointed to public bodies in Northern Ireland.

She is undoubtedly correct in expressing this view and it is essential that suitable measures are taken both to increase the number of women and also make all appointments to public bodies in Northern Ireland truly representative.

The trade union movement has consistently made the same point as Ms Leslie and articulated the high level of frustration that women - who constitute a majority of the population - are expected to "wait" before they can take their rightful place as full citizens in our society. Such a call comes at an interesting time locally, as currently members of the largest trade union in Northern Ireland, Nipsa - the majority of whose members are women - are voting for a new general secretary.

This offers them the opportunity not only to elect Alison Millar - clearly the candidate with the greatest knowledge, experience and track record on behalf of all the members of the union - but also make history by demonstrating that, as far as trade unions are concerned, women have as much right, based on their attributes and ability, to advance the trade union cause at the highest level.


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