Canada’s parliament has hit a historic milestone in female political representation. For the first time ever, 100 members of parliament in the House of Commons are women.
The 2019 federal election sent an already-unprecedented 98 women to the House. The addition of two female MPs in recent Toronto byelections brought the total number to 100. Liberals Marci Ien — who won former Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s riding of Toronto Centre — and Ya’ara Saks — who won former MP Michael Levitt’s riding of York Centre — will be joining their colleagues in the House after winning the Oct. 26 byelections.
Women hold 29.5 per cent of the 338 seats in the House of Commons, but after the 2019 election, advocates said there was still more work to be done.
“While there is room for celebration, we still fell just short of the 30 per cent goal we set... Change in Canada has been slow and incremental — a trend that continued in this election,” Eleanor Fast, the executive director of Equal Voice, said, in a news release.
“We need to have politics where everybody feels like they can participate,” Liberal MP Karen McCrimmon told CBC News after last year’s election. “It’s been my experience that the more diversity you have around a table, the better your decisions are going to be, because your decisions are going to be better informed.”
Of the 100 women in the House of Commons, 54 are Liberal MPs, 22 are Conservatives, 12 are Bloc Quebecois, nine are NDP, 2 are Greens and one — former Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould — is an Independent.