Thursday, 29 April 2021
Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation
We have heard the fantastic news today that the Minister, Deputy McEntee, has had a baby boy. Huge congratulations to Helen and Paul. It is powerful proof for young women watching that they can hold high office and still be supported in having a baby. However, as the Tánaiste said, we have more to do. As Deputy McEntee has said, that was a temporary sticking plaster. I hope today can be a springboard moment and that the Government will now commit to a plan to introduce the necessary permanent arrangements to support women in politics, all the way from councillors to Cabinet members. I hope Government will show real ambition in this regard. For example, it might do so as a little welcome back gift before the Minister returns from maternity leave. The elements of it are coming together. I published a Bill on remote voting for Deputies and Senators. That Bill was supported by the women's caucus and is being advanced with the Taoiseach. The Minister of State, Deputy Peter Burke, is dealing with maternity leave for councillors. This is very needed, even in my own area where two councillors have had babies since being elected. Will the Tánaiste commit to showing ambition in respect of developing a suite of measures to get this sorted?