Celebrating women's right to vote

Women’s Affairs Minister Jo Goodhew has celebrated the 121st anniversary of women’s suffrage with an event recognising women leaders in innovation. This event, part of the Leading Edge series being held at the National Library in Wellington, looks at New Zealand, both past and present, through the lens of innovation.

"In celebrating our women leaders in innovation, I acknowledge the women and men in 1893 that were innovative in their struggle to give women voting rights," Mrs Goodhew said.

"We are all proud that New Zealand was the first nation in the world to grant women the vote on September 19th, 1893.

"However, we should never be complacent about that right. Rights are only secured by using them. I urge all New Zealand women to exercise that right by voting on Saturday.

"As Kate Sheppard said, ‘Do not think your single vote does not matter much. The rain that refreshes the parched ground is made up of single drops’.

"Today I have been inspired by our talented women who are leading innovation in science, business and society. Their presentations show there is much more we can do to improve women’s lives.

"Like the suffragists’ battle, to achieve further progress, we need to be determined, work together, be innovative in our thinking and make great things happen.

"If we can do that, it will bring immense benefits for women, their families, our communities and all New Zealanders," Mrs Goodhew said.