UK
14/09/2015 09:04 BST | Updated 14/09/2015 15:59 BST

Jeremy Corbyn's Shadow Cabinet Slammed For Only Giving Women Junior Roles

Commenters online can't agree whether Jeremy's Corbyn's shadow cabinet is a milestone or a complete disaster for gender equality.

Corbyn has appointed a 50% female cabinet, but has remained resolutely silent on why there are no women in what are seen by some as the top three jobs.

He walked for 30 seconds in silence on Sunday night, while being repeatedly questioned by journalists.

A Sky News video showed journalists walking alongside Corbyn and quizzing him after he was criticised for the all-male top figures in his cabinet announced last night.

The new Labour leader was slammed by some for giving what are seen as the three top jobs to his ally John McDonnell, who is shadow chancellor; Andy Burnham, who is Labour's new shadow home secretary; and Hilary Benn who remains as shadow foreign secretary.

But the makeup of Corbum's shadow cabinet is around 50% female so far, a fare better ratio than the current cabinet which is about a third female.

Labour MP Diana Johnson tweeted that Corbyn's cabinet was disappointing and "#NotForGirls", but others called his shadow cabinet a "historic" moment for women in parliament given that more than half of its members are female.

It was announced after the backlash that Angela Eagle, the new shadow business secretary, will also be shadow first secretary of state, and deputise for Corbyn at Prime Minister's Questions, suggesting that Corbyn is attempting to appease the critics.

But reactions online to the absence of women in top roles were still not positive:

Corbyn's shadow cabinet confirmed so far is:

  • Shadow chancellor - John McDonnell
  • Shadow foreign secretary - Hilary Benn
  • Shadow home secretary - Andy Burnham
  • Shadow business secretary - Angela Eagle
  • Shadow health secretary - Heidi Alexander
  • Shadow justice secretary - Lord Falconer
  • Shadow education secretary - Lucy Powell
  • Shadow international development secretary - Diane Abbott
  • Shadow chief secretary to the Treasury - Seema Malhotra
  • Chief whip - Rosie Winterton
  • Shadow Northern Ireland secretary - Vernon Coaker
  • Shadow Scottish secretary - Ian Murray

As many people pointed out, while the top jobs hadn't gone to women, around half of Corbyn's cabinet is female:

And others said that his shadow cabinet should be judged on its actions, not the gender of its members:

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