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Highest percentage of women running ever, but only two women more standing than 2016

Published: Thursday, January 23, 2020

As nominations close for the 2020 General Election, the National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) today said that the bigger political parties will have a lot of work to do, when the gender quota rises to 40% in 2023.

Orla O’Connor, Director of NWCI said,

“Ireland has the highest percentage of women running ever in a general election, an important milestone. However, when you look behind the headline figures, 162 woman candidates will stand for election, only up two from the 160 who stood in 2016. Furthermore the two largest parties, Fianna Fail and Fine Gael have just about reached the gender quota, with Fine Gael on 30.5% and Fianna Fail on 31%. It is clear that the parties will have a lot of work to do ahead of the gender quota rising to 40% in 2023.”

She continued,

“The regional breakdown of candidates shows that women are again most likely to be on the ticket in urban areas. Women account for 37% of the candidates in the Dublin region (54 women, 98 men), as compared with levels of 30.7% in the rest of Leinster, 28% in Connacht-Ulster and 27% in Munster.”

People can follow conversations around the General Election from a women’s equality perspective on #FemGen.


For more information, please contact Sarah Clarkin, Communications and Social Media Officer, Tel. 085 861 9087.

Note to Editors

NWCI’s Feminist Ireland Manifesto highlights 10 key areas to bring about much needed change for women in Ireland. By signing  up to the manifesto through NWCI’s website (www.nwci.ie), candidates will commit to supporting these policies if elected to Dail Eireann.