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The second woman to reach Cabinet rank and the only woman Minister in the new Labour Government in Britain, Miss Ellen Wilkinson, who has been appointed Minister of Education, has received fitting recognition of her long and vigorous service in Parliament. There were no woman Ministers in the Conservative or wartime Coalition Governments, the first woman Cabinet Minister in Britain being Miss Margaret Bondfield, who was Minister of Labour in the late Mr. Ramsay Mac Donald's Government. Small, red-headed and fiery, Miss Wilkinson is 54 years of age and a M.A. of Manchester University. She was organiser of the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies, and then became a trade union organiser. In this war she has been Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Pensions, and Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Home Security. It was partly due to her splendid organisation during the blitz, when London's air raid shelters were put in her special care, that the health of the people remained good, and epidemics were prevented. The huge task of organising fire-watchers also fell to her. Of particular interest to New Zealand women is the appointment of Dr. Edith Summerskill as Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Food. Since her visit to the Dominion last year, women in this country feel they have a special tie with this attractive, auburn-haired woman, who has found time to be the mother of two children as well as a doctor and a Member of Parliament. Dr. Summerskill's constituency is West Fulham. She is especially well-known for her championship of equality for women. An uu ... appointment of interest is that of Mrs". Jenny Adamson, member for Dartford, Kent, as Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Pensions. Mrs. Adair.son has been the official "mother" of r.ome 1300 English war orphans, who have been brought up, under the Government's eye, with foster parents. Mrs. Adamson, in an interview, stated that it was intended that these orphans should be given every opportunity to take up a career for which they had special aptitudes, and'to go on to University if they were suitable. Mrs. Adamson is an honorary member of the National Council of Women.

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Bibliographic details

WOMAN MINISTER, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 184, 6 August 1945

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WOMAN MINISTER Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 184, 6 August 1945

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