Women in Politics

Women in Politics

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Belfast, Stormont Estate




Transmission 03/12/1992


14min 06sec




1 inch



Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland

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Inserts from a Counterpoint programme looking at women and their role in Northern Irish politics.

A point reiterated several times is the partial role of women in Northern Irish politics, an situation that seems all the more stark when compared to the positions held by their contemporaries in the rest of the UK and Northern Europe. Convening at the Ulster Unionist Party headquarters, we meet several women who don't seem entirely satisfied with their role, "we make the tea... we help the men folk".

The focus is then on Bernadette Devlin and her time as an elected Westminster MP for Mid-Ulster. Iris Robinson is no stranger to politics and comments that NI is "perceived to be a very religious province... men do not see women having a place in leadership areas".
Another matter of contention is the way in which male politicians address their female coworkers, with Brid Rodgers (SDLP) stating that she has been referred to "as the wee girl and love.". This is echoed by Hazel Bradford (Ulster Unionist) who heard comments such as, "she's a nice wee girl but you need a man in a man's job".

Included are the statistics of the women standing in the general election, with the DUP and Ulster Unionist Party having no women representatives. However, Ian Paisley comments that having a woman at the helm of the DUP, "could happen anytime".


Arlene Foster became the DUP's first female leader in 2015 and became Northern Ireland's First Minister (and first woman First Minister) in 2016.


A UTV Production.

Also Featured: Margaret Redpath, Lara McIlroy and Rick Wilford.



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