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In 1924, Wilkinson was elected to Parliament as MP for Middlesborough East. She was the only woman Labour MP, and one of only four women in the Parliament of 1924. Most notably, at that time she did not possess the household qualification which permitted her to vote. Wilkinson made her maiden speech on 10th December 1924, in which she addressed the need for votes for all women, unemployment benefits and insurance (amongst other subjects). The House of Commons, predominantly Conservative at that time, responded to her speech with a great cheer.
The De Montfort Project is an outreach project run by the Parliamentary Archives which explores the life and impact of local MPs and Peers on both their local area and at Parliament.