General News

New Zealand now has most LGBTQ+ inclusive parliament in the world

Rachel Badham October 21, 2020

Following the New Zealand elections on Saturday 17 October, the country now has a greater proportion of LGBTQ+ parliament members than any other country in the world. Out of 120 parliamentary positions, 12 seats – up from 7 – are now held by openly LGBTQ+ members, meaning 9.6% of the cabinet is made up of queer politicians; this is over 2% more than the UK’s parliament.

Labour leader Jacinda Ardern was also re-elected in a landslide victory after recently promising to ban LGBTQ+ conversion therapy if re-elected. Ardern said: “People should not be discriminated against, bullied or hurt for being who they are. We need to rally around that simple premise.”

Jacinda Ardern

A previous bill to criminalise the practice was unsuccessful which Ardern attributed to the country’s mixed-member proportional electoral system, meaning her party does not govern alone. She hopes New Zealand’s parliament will now show greater support for the bill, saying “I will commit our numbers to delivering this and I hope there will other parties in parliament who will support it”.