Young people and women remain under-represented in federal politics

From October 10-11th 2014 in Geneva Switzerland, the Inter-Parliamentary Union held its first Global Conference of Young Parliamentarians. The Conference was attended by over 180 parliamentarians from around the world. Discussions centered on efforts to challenge the ‘way politics is done’ and the role young parliamentarians can play in standing up against corruption, inequalities and unjust political, economic and social systems.  The Conference also brought to light the reality that less than 2% of parliamentarians are under the age of 30 and 10-20% are between the 30-40 years old.

During Canada’s last federal election, 76 women were elected to Parliament, with 18 being under the age of 40 at the time. Despite While this number marks a significant step towards the greater representation of women in federal politics, the Inter-Parliamentarian Union ranks Canada 55th in the World Classification of women in politics, with 25.1% seats held by women in the House of Commons and 39.% seats in the Senate. Rwanda has the most representation of women, with 63.8% seats in its legislature.

For more information, click here for the full ranking of women in national parliaments or read the report from the recent Global Conference of Young Parliamentarians.