Congratulations to the Rural Women members who have won council and DHB seats in the 2013 local body elections. Preliminary results show at least 14 members will be serving their communities for the next three years.
Rural Women National President, Liz Evans, says, “We congratulate these members who have stepped up to ensure that the rural voice is heard. There needs to be strong rural representation on councils, particularly those councils that act as unitary authorities. Services supplied and rating are very different for rural and urban people.”
Many provincial local authority areas have lost their ward voting opportunities, which can make it much harder for the more isolated farming areas to be represented on urban-based councils. We see this even in the provinces, which rely for their prosperity on their primary producer ratepayers.
“I am sure these successful candidates will help to raise awareness of rural issues and promote better understanding and fairer outcomes for everyone.”
Several Rural Women members also stood successfully for District Health Board positions.
With rural health outcomes being affected by distance and access to services, it’s so important that people who have a real understanding of the issues are able to advocate for rural communities when funding priorities are set and service decisions are made.
The successful candidates are:
Theresa Stark – Waikato Regional Council
Mary Gamble – Southern District Health Board
Geoff Evans – Marlborough District Council – Wairau Awatere Ward – Associate Rural Women member
Fiona Gower – Onewhero/Tuakau Community Board
Hilary McNab – Catlins Ward, Clutha District Council – returned unopposed
Sharyn Price – Corriedale Ward, Waitaki District Council
Joan Wilson – Strath-Taieri Community Board – returned unopposed
Kate Wilson – Mosgiel/Taieri Ward, Dunedin City Council
Ainsley Webb – Central Otago Health Inc board community representative – returned unopposed
Jacqui Church – Awaroa ki Tuakau Ward, Waikato District Council
Ruth Rainey – Rangitikei District Council
Carolyn McLellan QSO – Golden Bay community board
Rosemarie Costar – Onewhero-Te Akau ward, Waikato District Council
Louise Cloot, MNZM – Otago Regional Council – re-elected for her 9th term