Women in elected office in the UK

Following the election in 2019, the highest number of female MPs were elected to Parliament. This In Focus looks at the current levels of women in politics in the UK, including in the devolved administrations and local government. It then outlines some potential barriers to increased female participation and details some developments that have been made in this area in the last couple of years.

Women in elected office in the UK

Covid-19: Planning for the May 2021 elections to go ahead safely

A number of elections are due to be held across Great Britain on 6 May 2021. This includes local council elections, mayoral elections and elections to the Scottish and Welsh parliaments. In light of concerns about whether these elections can go ahead due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Government recently published guidance on how they can be run safely and securely.

Covid-19: Planning for the May 2021 elections to go ahead safely
  • In Focus

    Establishment of Mayor of West Yorkshire

    The Government announced the West Yorkshire Devolution Deal in March 2020. This would provide for the establishment of a mayor of West Yorkshire and confer several other functions on the West Yorkshire Combined Authority. A draft order, if passed by both Houses of Parliament, would implement the devolution deal. This article considers the devolution deal, the draft order that has been introduced to implement the deal, and parliamentary scrutiny of the order that has taken place.

  • In Focus

    Covid-19: Winter rough sleeping plan

    Rough sleepers have been identified as an at-risk group who are vulnerable to contracting and spreading Covid-19. The Government has launched several schemes to support local authorities and their partners to provide covid-secure accommodation to those sleeping rough or at risk of sleeping rough. In November 2020, the Government launched the Protect programme, which provides targeted funding throughout the winter to support areas with high numbers of rough sleepers.

  • In Focus

    Changes to the planning system in England: Permitted development rights and use classes

    In August and September 2020, the Government made several changes to the planning system in England. It introduced secondary legislation creating new permitted development rights and making changes to use classes. Five of these statutory instruments are being debated in the House of Lords on 27 October 2020. This article provides a summary of these instruments and the scrutiny they have received so far in Parliament.

  • In Focus

    Covid-19 local alert levels: Three-tier system for England

    On 12 October 2020, the Government announced a new system of local Covid-19 alert levels in England. Areas would be categorised as either ‘medium’, ‘high’ or ‘very high’. Different restrictions intended to combat the spread of Covid-19 would be in place based on the alert level in a local area. This article summarises the regulations establishing this new system and the reaction from the local areas affected.

  • In Focus

    Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull: Restrictions on meetings of households

    On 11 September 2020, the Government announced that it would be creating new ‘local lockdown’ restrictions in Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull. These regulations came into force on 15 September 2020. Under the regulations, those living within these areas are prohibited from meeting different households in private dwellings either within or outside the protected area (except for linked households). This article provides a summary of these regulations and their scrutiny in Parliament. It also considers how people in the areas affected have responded to the new restrictions.

  • In Focus

    Covid-19 regulations: Electric scooter trials

    The Government has laid regulations allowing trials of the use of electric scooters on roads to begin. Prior to the regulations, the use of both privately owned and rental e-scooters was prohibited on roads. The regulations use the ‘made negative’ procedure and came into force on 4 July 2020. This article examines what the regulations do, and explains concerns identified by the Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee. 

  • In Focus

    Blackburn with Darwen and Bradford local lockdown

    In July 2020, a local lockdown was introduced in Blackburn with Darwen and in Luton. This followed the introduction of similar measures in Leicester. In August 2020, Luton was taken out of local lockdown. At the same time, restrictions were introduced for Bradford. This article summarises the measures introduced and how they have changed over time.

  • In Focus

    Leicester lockdown: Changes since July 2020

    In June 2020, the Government announced a local lockdown would be implemented in Leicester and surrounding areas. This was intended to limit the spread of Covid-19. This article provides an overview of how the local lockdown in Leicester and surrounding areas was introduced and the subsequent changes to the rules.