EWL News

OPEN MESSAGE to Heads of State and governments on Gender Equality in the future MFF proposal

[Brussels, 28 May 2018] In light of the forthcoming European Summit on 28-29 June, the European Women Lobby wish to raise its deep concern regarding the proposal for the future budget of the EU.

Representing a total of more than 2000 organisations in all EU Member States and Candidate Countries, as well as 19 European-wide organisations representing the diversity of women and girls in Europe working to achieve gender equality in Europe and beyond, we are extremely concerned that the future proposal for the EU budget is gender neutral. We call upon you and the European Council to uphold equality between women and men, and ensure it is re-instated as a horizontal provision in the proposal for future Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF 2021-2027).
Equality between women and men is the cornerstone of the European Union since the beginning and Europe has shown strong leadership in gender equality over the decades. Equality between women and men as well as gender mainstreaming all policies are legal requirements enshrined in the treaties, the European Charter of Fundamental Rights, the UN Convention on the Rights of persons with Disabilities, as well as the Beijing Platform for Action and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to which your government and the EU is committed.
Therefore, we deeply regret that equality between women and men equality is no longer a horizontal provision for the future budget and subsequently will not be a priority for the spending period post 2020. The dilution of gender equality into other priorities is an indication that equality between women and men has lost its importance on the EU agenda. Women represent half of the population and while some progress has been made to achieve equality between women and men, gender equality is still not a reality in the EU and beyond. We cannot afford to become complacent as progress made to date could be rolled back.
At a time where European societies are confronted with rising extremism, radicalism and divisions, it is more important than ever to uphold and strengthen EU values of gender equality and human rights. It is therefore of utmost importance that the EU does not take a step backwards.
We call on you to reinstate gender equality as a horizontal provision, similar to article 7 of the current the Common Provisions Regulation EU 1303/2013, which states:
Article 7 - Promotion of equality between men and women and non-discrimination
The Member States and the Commission shall ensure that equality between men and women and the integration of gender perspective are taken into account and promoted throughout the preparation and implementation of programmes, including in relation to monitoring, reporting and evaluation.
The Member States and the Commission shall take appropriate steps to prevent any discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation during the preparation and implementation of programmes. In particular, accessibility for persons with disabilities shall be taken into account throughout the preparation and implementation of programmes.
We trust that you will give your utmost attention to this issue.

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