Better than the national average. “Encouraging data but more needs to be done”
They are women but also daughters, wives and mothers and they administer small and large Lombard municipalities. It’s not just a question of ‘women’s quotas’: in recent years the number of female mayors in Lombardy has grown by over 1%, exceeding the national figures. According to the report by Anci Lombardia, elaborated on data from the Ministry of the Interior 2022 and previewed by AdnKronos, while in Italy the percentage of female mayors stands at 15.2% in Lombardy they represent 18.3%.
Encouraging and constantly growing numbers, if we consider that in the last 7 years the number of female mayors has increased by 1.1%. In 2016, the percentage of female mayors in Lombardy was in fact equal to 17.2%, while in 2021 it rose to 18.1%. Furthermore, the Lombard provinces that have the most female mayors are those of Milan Metropolitan City (29.5%), Monza (20.8%) and Pavia (20.7%). Black shirt for the province of Cremona, where the share of female mayors does not reach double figures (9.8%).
“These are encouraging data and I hope that this percentage will rise throughout Italy, not just in Lombardy – Silvana Carmen Centurelli, mayor of Trezzo sull’Adda (Mi) tells AdnKronos -. Women still have to fight a bit, isn’t it still so obvious and simple. I’m 63 years old, I wasn’t born in politics and I found myself being mayor because I was asked for help as a female quota”. After having served as councilor for security for 5 years, Centurelli was elected first citizen of Trezzo sull’Adda. She is the first woman in the history of the Municipality that she administers. “I am lucky to be retired – she admits – and I accepted for that too, because I knew I could devote all my time to this activity. It makes me proud to know that I am the first female mayor of the city of Trezzo, because I think that women at 40 or 50 they feel old. I tell all women that we are never ‘finished,’ on the contrary, we can always get involved”.
He struggled during his career as mayor, which began 4 years ago “With men above all – he explains – but luckily they were in the minority and their attitude didn’t discourage me. Now I have also appointed a woman deputy mayor and I am very satisfied” . The mayor of Pero, Maria Rosa Belotti, is on the same wavelength. “I approached politics when I was very young – she says – I was about 14 then I made a long journey. I am the daughter of traders, I studied, I was first councilor and then mayor. It was a long journey. For young people who intend take the same path as me, I mean read the newspaper every day and study: it’s essential I’m living a wonderful experience, I’m in my second term but I must say that by my side I had a family who put me in a position to be able do this job”.
The fact that two women like Giorgia Meloni and Elly Schlein are respectively at the head of the government and of the Democratic Party, according to the mayor of Pero, is a “strong but not sufficient” signal because, he points out, “one cannot attribute the best or least success of a situation to being a woman or a man. People make the difference”. Lara Carano, mayor of Assago, is also enthusiastic about the data on women mayors in Lombardy: “I hope that over time we will increase this percentage and not decrease it – she underlines – these numbers bode well, I’m happy about it”.
Today, young women “I would advise them to be strong, constant, tenacious and convinced of their decisions. Even if the female figure in institutions does not have an easy life like men”. A woman mayor, observes Carano, “is much more questioned and under observation than a man mayor. It also happens for women in the company or for our female premier. On June 2, 2021, on the occasion of the Republic Day, I said that when Italy had a female prime minister or a woman at the Quirinale then we would have taken steps forward. We have obtained 50%, now we will see how long it takes for the other 50”. (by Federica Mochi)