Councillors agreed a “gender-proofing” policy within the review of the County Development Plan 2012-2016, adopting the first motion to come before council from the Women Into Public Life Project event.
“Some people thought it was a controversial motion but really it is a practical one,” said Donegal Deputy Mayor, Sinn Féin Cllr. Marie-Therese Gallagher, who tabled the motion. For example, she said, the plan’s economic development sections need gender-proofing to ensure there will be “jobs and sustainability for both young women and young men, and there will be jobs for them to stay in the county.”
Fianna Fáil Cllr. Rena Donaghey, who seconded the motion, said the Donegal Vocational Education Committee “are the only ones who really do serious gender-proofing and I think Donegal County Council have to step up to the mark.”
WIPL held a mock council made up largely of women that adopted several motions to address issues of women’s under representation in public life. Donegal Mayor, Sinn Féin Cllr. Cora Harvey, and Cllrs. Gallagher and Donaghey said all the motions will come before council.
Fianna Fáil Cllr. Dessie Larkin and Sinn Féin Cllr. Mick Quinn, who took part in the event, supported the motion. “The Women Into Public Life Project is something all our parties should be strenuously supporting,” Cllr. Quinn said.
Fine Gael Cllr. John Boyle, who attended the WIPL event, supported the motion and suggested that Mayor Harvey and Deputy Mayor Gallagher should meet Queen Elizabeth when she visits Ireland next month.
But while Cllr. Gallagher thanked her colleagues for their support, she said she had no intention of meeting the Queen.