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21 March - South Australia's Suffrage Act is proclaimed

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21 March - South Australia's Suffrage Act is proclaimed

Unread postby Max ADU » Thu Mar 21, 2013 1:55 pm

Today in Australian History
Thursday, March 21, 1895.

South Australia's Suffrage Act is proclaimed after being passed by Queen Victoria.

First-Women.jpg

South Australia is recognised as the first state of Australia to grant women the right to vote. It is generally accepted that this right occurred with the passing of a Bill on 18 December 1894.

However, a letter from the Attorney-General advising Governor Kintore that Royal Assent would be required to enact the Bill, is dated 21 December 1894. The Bill was enacted when Queen Victoria gave Royal Assent on 2 February 1895.

Queen Victoria's Royal assent granted women an equal right with men to vote, and it also allowed women to stand for election to South Australia's House of Assembly. Women who owned property could also now vote in Legislative Council elections.

The announcement proclaiming South Australia's Suffrage Act was gazetted as 'The Constitution Amendment Act 1894' in the "South Australian Government Gazette" on 21 March 1895. The amendment stated the following:
Section 1. The right to vote for persons to sit in Parliament as members of the Legislative Council, and the right to vote for persons to sit in Parliament as members of the House of Assembly, are hereby extended to women.

Section 2. Women shall possess and may exercise the rights hereby granted, subject to the same qualifications and in the same manner as men.
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