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Browse the history of Waimakariri District
125 years ago on the 19th September 1883 women won the right to vote. New Zealand became the first self-governing country in the world in which all women had the right to vote in parliamentary elections.
NZ History has fascinating resources, information, images and activities which are available for all to access. Have a look through the range of articles, databases and interactive displays to learn more about New Zealand's Suffrage history and what you can do, even today, to get involved.
Kate Sheppard is New Zealand’s most celebrated suffragist, but there were many people working tirelessly throughout New Zealand. These women are some of the lesser-known women activists of this era. Their stories illustrate key tactics and differing priorities as they fought for the vote and equality in both Māori and Pākehā realms.
In 2018 gender based inequality continues to exist in New Zealand. Women have held some of the most powerful and high-profile public offices, including prime minister, governor-general, attorney-general and chief justice. Yet women continue to be paid less than men, are more likely to be unemployed or in unpaid work, and experience high rates of violence and abuse. For more on the push for equality, see the NZ History - Suffrage website.
Do you know if your relative signed the suffrage petition? Want to find out? Well you can search the petition on the NZ History website.
A Suffrage 125 symbol has been developed to help promote and identify related activities and events. The Suffrage 125 celebrations are guided by the motivation to raise awareness that people of diverse cultures have contributed to furthering the rights of women and girls in New Zealand, and are intended to motivate the next generation of change makers to continue that progress.
To learn more, visit the Ministry for Women.
For more images, see Sister Marches.