[Brussels, 12 March 2014] In an effort to reach more voters and to frame the European elections more attractively, for the upcoming May elections the European political parties decided to nominate one top candidate per party, each of which will simultaneously be put forward as candidate for one of the Top Jobs of the European Union’s institutions - President of the European Commission.
These candidates will not only be the face of their parties for the next months, but also the face of European politics. But looking at the group portraits it becomes apparent that the face of European political decision-making is, first and foremost, male (with the single exception of the European Greens, who nominated Ska Keller and José Bové ).
The European Women’s Lobby welcomes the European Parliament’s attempt to reach out to the voters, but is disappointed by its conduct, as more than 50% of Europe’s population will not be able to identify themselves with these candidates.
While women and men are presently at New York’s CSW58 discussing how to successfully integrate women and their diverse needs into all areas, once again Europe does not stick to the implementation of its core values - values including equality between women and men.
We believe that gender equality is a precondition for modernising our political systems, so that women and men, in their diversity, equally share rights, responsibilities, and power.
The European Women’s Lobby therefore calls on political parties all over Europe to promote and ensure equal gender representation in their decision-making bodies, and to seriously and sustainedly promote women candidates, all the while treating gender equality as a key priority in their programmes and future policies.