[Brussels, 27 September] The European Women’s Lobby (EWL) and Parity Democracy campaign national partners were joined by MEP’s, the European Commission and an esteemed audience to launch the next phase of the 50/50 campaign and the Parity Democracy campaign, for greater women’s political representation and participation.
The next phase, alongside ParityDemocracy.eu partners from Cyprus, Romania, Lithuania and the Czech Republic reaches “Beyond the Brussels Bubble” - to member states, campaigners and citizens on the ground. The Parity Democracy website paritydemocracy.eu is an online hub and platform for this action – including all partner and calls to action. Visit the website here.
Introduced and moderated by Serap Altinisik, EWL Fundraising Coordinator and Policy Officer, presentations and discussions looked at varied women’s political representation in member states, explanations and obstacles for women’s under representation, and positive action to ensure more proportionate representation in the European Parliamentary elections in 2014.
Speaking on behalf of the European Commission was Aurel Ciobanu-Dordea, Director of Equality in DG Justice, joined by Campaign Core Group MEP’s Sirpa Pietakainen and Zita Gurmai. On behalf of the European Women’s Lobby, President Vivian Teitelbaum supported and spoke of the role of the EWL and the importance of working together across party divisions and national borders.
National Partners were represented by Marcela Adamusova, (Czech Women’s Lobby, and Forum 50%); Dina Logan, (Romanian Women’s Lobby); Susana Pavlou, (Mediterranean Institute for Gender Equality, MIGS); and Jurate Puidiene, (Lithuanian Women’s Lobby).
The campaign pulls together information and resources online (paritydemocracy.eu), T.V. and radio spots to reach and include European citizens, as well as linking with the EWL 50/50 Campaign and institutions at European level.
Parity democracy means the equal representation of women and men in political decision-making. It acknowledges that women and men should equally share rights, responsibilities and power, making the political system more democratic and just.
There are many statistics that highlight the gap that still needs to be bridged for equal representation of women and men to be reached. Here are just a few. . .
- Women make up less than 25% of senior ministers in national governments
- Women are only 24% of members of national governments, (just 12% in Romania)
- In in the European Parliament itself, women make up less than 35% of MEPs
The upcoming European elections will reveal how attitudes towards the European Union have shifted and changed over the past five years, as we elect the leaders to make the vital decisions which will shape our lives at crucial time, up until 2019.
The overall aim of the project is to promote active democratic citizenship and parity democracy in Europe. The specific aim is to promote the active participation of women as voters and candidates in the European Parliamentary elections in 2014, as well as increase the number of women among those elected.
The EWL would like to pay special thanks to the Information Office of the European Parliament in Belgium for all their hard work and help in hosting this event.
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