The Italian Almanac

provincial council

Just One Woman

A court in southern Italy dissolved an all-male provincial council for failing to appoint any women councilors. Judges gave the president of Taranto province, Gianni Florido, 30 days to appoint a new cabinet with at least one woman councilor. The decision follows a lawsuit by the local citizen`s group Taranto Futura.

A local statute requires that the Taranto provincial council include members of both sexes. Florido has said he would appoint a new provincial council as soon as possible. A member of the centre-left Democratic Party, Florido was elected to his second non-consecutive term as president of the Taranto region during the administrative elections in June. Equal Opportunity Minister Mara Carfagna hailed the decision saying that local administrators had a responsibility ``to guarantee adequate female representation``.

Carafagna added that she opposed quotas for women in government, but that the court in Taranto was right to intervene. In agreement with the minister, Democratic Party Senator Vittoria Franco said the court ruling was ``good news``. The opposition spokesperson on equal opportunity, Franco said that ``the situation in Taranto is all the more worrying because a center-left administration ought to have gender equality in its DNA``.