Women in the Senate

The first woman senator was not elected until 1943. Since then the numbers have slowly grown, particularly since the 1980s. Gender parity was reached for the first time in 2019.

50%
Men
Women
1901

36
0
0%
1902

36
0
0%
1903

36
0
0%
1904

36
0
0%
1905

36
0
0%
1906

36
0
0%
1907

36
0
0%
1908

36
0
0%
1909

36
0
0%
1910

36
0
0%
1911

36
0
0%
1912

36
0
0%
1913

36
0
0%
1914

36
0
0%
1915

36
0
0%
1916

36
0
0%
1917

36
0
0%
1918

36
0
0%
1919

36
0
0%
1920

36
0
0%
1921

36
0
0%
1922

36
0
0%
1923

36
0
0%
1924

36
0
0%
1925

36
0
0%
1926

36
0
0%
1927

36
0
0%
1928

36
0
0%
1929

36
0
0%
1930

36
0
0%
1931

36
0
0%
1932

36
0
0%
1933

36
0
0%
1934

36
0
0%
1935

36
0
0%
1936

36
0
0%
1937

36
0
0%
1938

36
0
0%
1939

36
0
0%
1940

36
0
0%
1941

36
0
0%
1942

36
0
0%
1943

21 Aug 1943 – election

35
1
3%
1944

35
1
3%
1945

35
1
3%
1946

35
1
3%
1947

1 Jul 1947 – terms commenced (elected 28 Sept 1946)

34
2
6%
1948

34
2
6%
1949

34
2
6%
1950

22 Feb 1950 – terms commenced (elected 10 Dec 1949); Senate increased to 60 senators

56
4
7%
1951

28 Apr 1951 – election

56
4
7%
1952

56
4
7%
1953

9 May 1953 – Senate election
1 Jul 1953 – terms commenced

56
4
7%
1954

56
4
7%
1955

11 Oct 1955 – Nancy Buttfield (SA) appointed

55
5
8%
1956

1 Jul 1956 – terms commenced (elected 10 Dec 1955)

55
5
8%
1957

55
5
8%
1958

55
5
8%
1959

1 Jul 1959 – terms commenced (elected 22 Nov 1958)

55
5
8%
1960

55
5
8%
1961

55
5
8%
1962

1 Jul 1962 – terms commenced (elected 9 Dec 1961)

55
5
8%
1963

55
5
8%
1964

55
5
8%
1965

1 Jul 1965 – terms commenced (elected 5 Dec 1964)

56
4
7%
1966

56
4
7%
1967

56
4
7%
1968

1 Jul 1968 – terms commenced (elected 25 Nov 1967)

57
3
5%
1969

57
3
5%
1970

57
3
5%
1971

1 Jul 1971 – terms commenced (elected 21 Nov 1970)

58
2
3%
1972

58
2
3%
1973

58
2
3%
1974

18 May 1974 – election

56
4
7%
1975

13 Dec 1975 – election; Senate increased to 64 senators

58
6
9%
1976

58
6
9%
1977

14 Dec 1977 – Janine Haines (SA) appointed

57
7
11%
1978

1 Jul 1978 – terms commenced (elected 10 Dec 1977)

58
6
9%
1979

58
6
9%
1980

15 Oct 1980 – Jean Hearn (Tas.) appointed

57
7
11%
1981

12 Mar 1981 – Florence Bjelke-Petersen (Qld) appointed
5 May 1981 – Margaret Reid (ACT) appointed
1 Jul 1981 – terms commenced (elected 18 Oct 1980)

54
10
16%
1982

54
10
16%
1983

5 Mar 1983 – elections

51
13
20%
1984

5 Nov 1984 – Kathy Sullivan (Qld) resigned

52
12
19%
1985

1 Jul 1985 – terms commenced (elected 1 Dec 1984); Senate increased to 76 senators

62
14
18%
1986

13 Mar 1986 – Jocelyn Newman (Tas.) appointed
26 Aug 1986 – Janet Powell (Vic.) appointed

60
16
21%
1987

11 Feb 1987 – Sue West (NSW) appointed
11 Jul 1987 – election

59
17
22%
1988

29 Jan 1988 – Sue Ryan (ACT) resigned
21 Jul 1988 – Irina Dunn (NSW) appointed

59
17
22%
1989

59
17
22%
1990

24 Mar 1990 – election
1 Jul 1990 – terms commenced

58
18
24%
1991

29 Aug 1991 – Karin Sowada (NSW) appointed

57
19
25%
1992

57
19
25%
1993

13 Mar 1993 – election
1 Jul 1993 – terms commenced
24 Aug 1993 – Kay Denman (Tas.) appointed

59
17
22%
1994

59
17
22%
1995

29 Nov 1995 – Natasha Stott Despoja (SA) appointed

58
18
24%
1996

2 Mar 1996 – election
8 Mar 1996 – Sue Mackay (Tas.) appointed
1 Jul 1996 – terms commenced

53
23
30%
1997

9 Apr 1997 – Marise Payne (NSW) appointed
13 May 1997 – Karen Synon (Vic.) appointed
15 Oct 1997 – Cheryl Kernot (Qld) resigned

52
24
32%
1998

16 Jun 1998 – Trish Crossin (NT) appointed
3 Sep 1998 – Belinda Neal (NSW) resigned

52
24
32%
1999

1 Jul 1999 – terms commenced (elected 3 Oct 1998)

54
22
29%
2000

54
22
29%
2001

54
22
29%
2002

1 Feb 2002 – Jocelyn Newman (Tas.) resigned
1 Jul 2002 – terms commenced (elected 10 Nov 2001)

53
23
30%
2003

14 Feb 2003 – Margaret Reid (ACT) resigned

54
22
29%
2004

54
22
29%
2005

5 May 2005 – Connie Fierravanti-Wells (NSW) appointed
1 Jul 2005 – terms commenced (elected 9 Oct 2004)

49
27
36%
2006

49
27
36%
2007

2 Apr 2007 – Jeannie Ferris (SA) died
19 Apr 2007 – Sue Boyce (Qld) appointed

49
27
36%
2008

8 May 2008 – Jacinta Collins (Vic.) appointed
1 Jul 2008 – terms commenced (elected 24 Nov 2007)

49
27
36%
2009

49
27
36%
2010

49
27
36%
2011

1 Jul 2011 – terms commenced (elected 21 Aug 2010)
28 Aug 2011 – Helen Coonan (NSW) resigned

47
29
38%
2012

31 Mar 2012 – Judith Adams (WA) died
20 Jun 2012 – Lin Thorp (Tas.) appointed

47
29
38%
2013

15 May 2013 – Sue Lines (WA) appointed
13 Nov 2013 – Deborah O’Neill (NSW) appointed

45
31
41%
2014

1 Jul 2014 – terms commenced (elected 7 Sept 2013)

47
29
38%
2015

6 May 2015 – Jennifer McAllister (NSW) appointed
21 May 2015 – Joanna Lindgren (Qld) appointed
10 Aug 2015 – Christine Milne (Tas) resigned
10 Sept 2015 – Penny Wright (SA) resigned

47
29
38%
2016

1 Jul 2016 – terms commenced (elected 2 Jul 2016)
25 Oct 2016 – Kimberley Kitching (Vic) appointed

45
31
41%
2017

19 Apr 2017 – Lucy Gichuhi (SA) declared elected; 18 Jul 2017 – Larissa Waters (Qld) resigned; 27 Oct 2017 – Fiona Nash (NSW) disqualified; 14 Nov 2017 – Jacqui Lambie (Tas) resigned; 22 Nov 2017 – Skye Kakoschke-Moore (SA) resigned

48
28
37%
2018

14 Feb 2018 – Kristina Keneally (NSW) appointed
21 Mar 2018 – Amanda Stoker (Qld) appointed
9 May 2018 – Katy Gallagher (ACT) disqualified
6 September 2018 – Larissa Waters (Qld) appointed

46
30
39%
2019

15 Feb 2019 – Jacinta Collins (Vic) resigned
6 Mar 2019 – Wendy Askew (Tas) appointed
1 Jul 2019 – Terms commenced (elected 18 May 2019)
11 Sept 2019 – Sarah Henderson (Vic) appointed

38
38
50%