RECENT comments by female councillors highlighting the abuse and harassment they all-to-often face, paint a grim picture of the state of female representation in Cornish politics.

Being 'fair game for everything' in a 'toxic environment,' unfortunately, seems to mirror the broader societal challenges women encounter in male-dominated spheres, where their voices are often silenced and their contributions devalued.

Sometimes, this derision comes from within the political sphere itself, other times its root cause can be traced back to social media echo chambers or long-outdated and draconian views on sex and gender. 

The consequences of this toxic environment are far-reaching, deterring women from pursuing political careers and depriving communities of their valuable perspectives and leadership. The silencing of female voices perpetuates a cycle of underrepresentation, further reinforcing the notion that women's voices are less important or less deserving of a seat at the political table.

The underrepresentation of women in Cornish politics is not merely a matter of fairness and equality; it is a detriment to the communities they could serve. By silencing female voices, dear reader, we deprive ourselves of the diverse perspectives and experiences that women bring to the table.

Creating a more inclusive and respectful political environment, in the opinion of this Skipper, would be a step towards a more effective and representative governance.