Eamon Ryan missed chance to promote women, says Catherine Martin

Green Party deputy leader says leader could have united party with Minister selection

Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Green Party deputy leader Catherine Martin Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

 

The Green Party’s deputy leader Catherine Martin has said that the party missed an opportunity to promote women when appointing Ministers in the new Cabinet.

The appointment of three men as Ministers of State was the prerogative of Eamon Ryan as leader, Ms Martin told RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland.

“As a female politician and someone who set up the caucus and I set up our own green group Mná Glasa, I would always seek to promote women in our party, but having said that all Green Party Ministers who are there are good for the job, and I respect the decision.”

Ms Martin said that wherever there are women who have proven they are ready and able, they should be promoted.

“We should always seek to promote because young girls cannot aim to be what they cannot see. We should always be seeking to do that, to promote women.”

The Minister for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport and the Gaeltacht said she congratulated all the male Ministers.

“They’re all able for the job, but I think there was a missed opportunity to promote women and from our side there was also a missed opportunity to unite the party as well, that nobody who voted no or advocated no to the programme for Government was promoted to ministerial position and I think that was a missed opportunity to unite.

“We are a party that respects and cherishes debate and challenge and having those voices inside and within government at the ministerial table would have been welcome.”

When asked about an accusation of misogyny within the party by Cork Green Party councillor Lorna Bogue, Ms Martin said: “I think we have to be seen to do more — as a party we talk the talk in relation to promoting diversity and inclusivity, but if we’re not acting on it I think that’s regrettable and that’s something I would like to see changed.”