TWO Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidates have joined forces to highlight the gender imbalance in politics and encourage more women to get involved at all levels.  

Speaking at the inaugural Women in Leadership and Entrepreneurship conference organised by Cornwall’s Inspiring Women Network, Thalia Marrington and Ruth Gripper hosted a conversation with women interested in learning more about politics.  

“Women often tell me they don’t know anything about politics, but like everyone we are living it every day,” said Ruth, Lib Dem candidate in Truro and Falmouth constituency. “For example, cuts to services often have a bigger impact on women who still are more likely than men to have caring responsibilities.” 

Thalia Marrington, a serving Cornwall Councillor who is aiming to become the next MP for Camborne, Redruth and Hayle, added: “There has been progress, but it’s slow. Still only a third of MPs are women.

"Within Cornwall Council, just a quarter of councillors are women. That’s worse than the national average. We’re missing out on perspectives, skills and experiences that could make a real contribution to public life.” 

The candidates want to encourage more women to get involved in politics, regardless of party, and are encouraging people to get in touch if they’d like to find out more. Organisations such as 50:50, a cross-party network promoting gender balance, say that often women do not put themselves forward.

“That’s why it’s so important to start these conversations” said Thalia, who has benefited from 50:50’s support programme.