This chapter examines the challenges facing women who want to participate in politics in Northern Ireland and touches upon the relationship between women inside and outside politics. It draws upon survey research to show changes in public attitudes and discusses outreach programmes that support women who wish to become involved. The chapter traces the post-Good Friday Agreement (GFA) journey for women through the political institutions and demonstrates that while some progress has been made, more is required. The Northern Ireland Local Government Association, supported by Arlene Foster MLA (then Environment Minister), introduced an annual networking dinner in Parliament Buildings for women politicians. The election to the first Northern Ireland Assembly followed within months of the GFA. In assessing the gender deficit, female MLAs in the 1998 Assembly cited male culture and attitudes as obstacles to their participation.

in Everyday life after the Irish conflict