The number of women in Parliament remained very low until the 1990s. The cultural impact of the women’s liberation movement of the 1970s and 1980s, focused campaigning by groups like the Women’s Electoral Lobby, and the greater involvement of women in politics all contributed to the jump in numbers. That increase was then reinforced with the 1996 introduction of a new voting system: mixed member proportional representation (MMP). Since then, numbers of women MPs have gradually risen. The 2017 election saw 46 women elected, making up 38% of Parliament.
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Source: New Zealand Parliamentary debates and the New Zealand Houses of Parliament