New Zealand’s minister for women, Julie Anne Genter, has announced she delivered her first child, a baby boy, after cycling to hospital.
Genter is the country’s second member of the government to give birth this year, after the prime minister, Jacinda Ardern.
Having two members of the government pregnant was embraced by many as a symbol of progress for leadership roles and Ardern was the world’s first elected leader since Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto’s in 1990 to give birth while in office.
Parliamentary babies are now allowed to accompany their parents into the debating chamber and swim in parliament’s pool thanks to a push by the Speaker to make the legislature more friendly to new mothers.
Such steps aim to help boost diversity in parliament, where female representations has lingered below half at 38%, and accommodate a baby boom since last September’s election, when two women Labour members with infants also took up their seats.