“I don’t want my nine-year-old niece to still be fighting these battles”, says Nicola Sturgeon on why she’s for quotas

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon believes it’s time for quotas on senior positions so the next generation doesn’t have to fight the same battles women do today.

Sturgeon was interviewed on stage by Sir Harold Evans, the author and editor-at-large of Thomson Reuters, during the recent Women in the World Summit in London.Sturgeon pic

Speaking at the Summit she said: “I’ve got a 50:50 cabinet. However, it’s only one of three in the world. We’re going to keep trying to make progress on this because it’s not good for any of us to under use the talents of 50% of the population.

“I’ve argued for positive action and I do believe in quotas. It’s taking an awful long time to get there without them so we need to accelerate that process. I don’t want my nine-year-old niece to still be fighting these battles.”

Sturgeon believes that gender equality will not be achieved until society has eradicated violence against women: “I believe passionately that domestic violence isn’t just a result of gender inequality but a cause of gender inequality. We’ll never have true gender equality until we eradicate violence against women.

“Scotland has a new bill that will make revenge porn a ‘specific crime’ to make sure that in court cases a judge can give directions to a jury to explain things juries will find difficult to understand. Like why it takes a victim seven years to have the courage to report it. I believe more passionately than I believe in many things that we need to drive forward gender equality. But we won’t when so many women are still victims of violence.”

Sturgeon puts her own career success down to having had the opportunity to study at university. Therefore she said she has no plans to change the fact that Scotland does not have tuition fees at its universities: “We don’t have tuition fees in Scotland and I feel very strongly for that.

“If we’d had them I don’t think I would have been able to go to university. I’ve got no right to take that away from any young person coming up behind me and I feel that very very strongly.”

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