LABOUR'S candidate for the general election will be selected from a women-only shortlist, it has been revealed. 

Speaking on Radio 4 in a debate about the number of women in Parliament, MP Rachel Reeves revealed that the party will only select women in seats that women are retiring.

"We've said that in seats where Labour women are retitring from Parliament, those seats will have all women shortlists," she said.  

"[...]But also in those seats where men are retiring, I think there's a good chance that some of those seats will select women to be parliamentary candidates [...]It's about having women selected for seats that the party can win."

Rachel Reeves herself was selected from a women-only shortlist when she first became and MP in 2010. She was only the second woman MP in Leeds. 

She said she 'didn't think it was the case' that there were no capable women who could have been MPs before, but that there were no role models for women and 'MPs looked like white men and so parties selected white men.'

The admission about the Slough shortlist caused debate among the panel, which included Women and Equalities Select Committee chairman (Conservative) MP Maria Miller, Labour's Rachel Reeves and Ukip's Suzanne Evans and Sarah Olney, Lib Dem. 

Ukip's Suzanne Evans said all-women shortlists are 'fundamentally wrong.'

"You don't tackle equality by pushing discrimination and for me, all-female shortlists are discrimination," she said. She added there could be a 'backlash if they [women] are seen to have got there purely on the basis of their gender.'

Maria Miller MP was asked about Maidenhead MP & Prime Minister Theresa May's record on equality and whether she supports other women getting to the top.

"Theresa May has been the backbone of why we have tripled the number of women in our party [...] I think she is hugely important, not only within my own party, providing a tremendous role model for women MPs, women councillors, encouraging more women to come in to politics, but also I think more generally as well, like other people like Nicole Sturgeon."

The MP said there are 'barriers' for women coming in to politics and women have 'general fears' about their safety.