There is a push for structural change to get more women involved at the local government level.
The National Women's Council (NWCI) has launched a toolkit on how to encourage women into local government and support them to stay.
In 2021, a Citizens Assembly on Gender Equality called for urgent action to provide the family-friendly policies needed to diversify politics.
Women are underrepresented in local government - currently holding 25% of council seats. This is a marginal increase from 21% after the 2014 local elections.
NWCI director Orla O'Connor told Breakfast Briefing: "It's a very small increase and we're seeing very slow progression.
"I think what we're saying in the launching of our toolkit today... that the structures need to change.
"It's nothing that women are doing that need to change, it's the structures that need to change.
"There are structural barriers to women's participation".
She said they spoke to both sitting councillors, and those who decided to give up their seats "because retention is also an issue".
While training should also form part of the changes.
"Each local authority needs to design its own plan in terms of the participation of women.
"And I think the thing that's important about this toolkit is this will benefit men and women, and will also really support I think a diversity of representation.
"It's looking at things like hybrid meetings, which make it easier to facilitate access.
"We've seen that already starting through the pandemic, and some councils have continued with that - so that's a key part in terms of how you support access.
"But also we're talking about understanding of gender equality needs to change within our local authorities.
"So we're looking at things like...training on gender bias, training on understanding gender equality and why it is important that councils adopt this structural change", she added.