Posted on 24 July 2014
(Brussels 22 July 2014) President Juncker is currently negotiating with Member States to form the new European Commission and a transversal campaign calls him to respect a crucial requirement, to guarantee gender equality in the nomination of commissioners. In the outgoing Commission, only 9 commissioners on 28 were women.
The European Union is committed to making continual progress towards gender equality; hence an increase in the number of female commissioners in the new EU Commission is an urgent matter.
Junker should nominate 14 female commissioners, but Member States seem not likely to fill this moral obligation. The candidates presented by 11 countries in the beginning of July are all men and the Italian female candidate to become High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, hasn’t been approved by the Council.
Europolitics collected and cross-checked information about women in Member States who could be valuable candidates for the European Commission. The result of this work is a list of 70 women perfectly worthy of becoming commissioners and fitting for the position in the actual political situation.
Sign the petition asking for at least ten female commissioners here!
You can also join the #TenOrMore campaign called by female EU commissioners asking for more women commissioners. If we reach this objective not only would the EU Commission thereby be more diverse and more effective, but it would also be more representative of its citizens, half of which are women!
For more information, please read the following letter sent to Jean-Claude Juncker by female European commissioners.
And here you can find EWL open letter to Juncker, asking for a gender equal Commission and to designate a European Commissioner for women’s rights and gender equality.
Posted on 9 June 2014
[Brussels, 6 June 2014] Why is equality only the icing on the cake? Make it a reality for everyday!
Do you believe that women’s rights are human rights and that it is high time equality between women and men was made reality?
Become a “Friend of the European Women’s Lobby" and donate once or on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis!
By becoming a "Friend of the European Women’s Lobby" (EWL), you invest in a brighter future for every girl, woman, man and boy in Europe.
Every day, the EWL is campaigning for a gender equal Europe. With regular financial support from friends like you, the EWL can ensure the existence of an independent voice for women’s rights in Europe.
Benefits of becoming a “Friend of the EWL” include:
If you believe that…
…then sign up to become a "Friend of the EWL" today!
Together – with the support of you as “Friends of the EWL”, we can achieve more!
To become a “Friend of the EWL” fill in this online form.
Please spread the word and share with like-minded friends, family and colleagues interested in women’s rights and gender equality.
You can find out more about the work you can support and how by downloading the EWL publication HER FUTURE – What’s it Worth to You?
Posted on 5 June 2014
If committed to women’s rights, young women leaders can make a difference for women and girls in Europe! Support the European Women’s Lobby and its innovative training modules in order to have your voice heard at European level, through the commitment of young women leaders.
The European Women’s Lobby (EWL) is now part of the Catapult community! Catapult is a crowd-funding platform dedicated to gender equality, and is hosting an innovative project of the EWL. EWL’s project consists of developing training modules on women’s rights and leadership, in order to make sure that the voice of women’s organisations is brought at European level through the commitment of trained young women leaders.
Please help us to reach our crowd-funding goals in order to be able to devleop our training modules and deliver them to the young women leaders who will be elected in the European Parliament! Because young women parliamentarians are women’s organisations’ allies in the realisation of gender equality.
Support our project, donate, share the link on Internet and social media, make noise about it! We would like to reach our funding goal by the time of the European elections!
Thanks to our training, young women leaders will be able to make a change towards a brighter future for women and girls in Europe. We know how important it is to have committed allies at European level, to push for gender equality and promote and support initiatives upholding women’s rights in Europe. For example, in the last term, thanks to our advocacy work, the EP adopted a resolution on violence against women with concrete legislative recommendations to the European Commission. Last November, the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) supported our views on gender equality and pushed for more women on boards in an EU directive.
This project is innovative because, by investing in the European Women’s Lobby (EWL) training modules, you invest in a Europe caring for gender equality. By helping us to develop these modules towards young women leaders, you are making a contribution to long-term change and support the voice of women’s organisations in Europe. Moreover, the modules will be also used by our members at national level, towards decision-makers of different democratic structures.
We are investing in young women leaders! Our workshops will also bring confidence and leadership tools to young women leaders in Brussels. As a result, they will become more visible in their field and bring the voice of young women and girls in Europe to debates and policies. We hope that more young women leaders will commit to women’s rights and make a change in the European leadership world towards gender equality. In the long term, these women will act as role models for other young women.
Click here to find out more about the project.
Posted on 22 May 2014
Check out our European elections page with our manifesto, reactions of topcandidates Ska Keller, Guy Verhofstadt, Martin Schulz and Jean-Claude Juncker, all other MEPS/candidates who commit to gender equality and our gender audit of the parties’ elections manifestos in the context of our 50/50 campaign.
We need to make sure that women’s rights and gender equality will be at the core of the policies and work of the new European institutions.
Posted on 16 May 2014
[Brussels, 16 May 2014] Tomorrow, the European Women’s Lobby will be present at the open door day of the European institutions. We will be outside the European Parliament, so if you are in Brussels, come and see us!
To celebrate Europe Day in the weeks leading up to the European elections, the EU institutions open their doors to the public in Brussels, Luxembourg and Strasbourg.
Posted on 17 April 2014
[17 April 2014] The CATWLAC (Coalition against Trafficking in Women in Latin America and Caribe) has launched a campaign to alert on the organisation of prostitution and the trivialization of sexual exploitation in Brazil, especially during the 2014 World Cup Brazil and the 2016 Olympic Games.
Say NO to sex tourism and sexual exploitation. Sign the petition to support the campaign. Your signature can make a real change to the lives of hundreds of women and girls in Brazil.
Brazil is the sixth largest economy in the world with 200 million inhabitants and is hosting the World Cup from June 12 to July 13, 2014 and the Olympic Games in Summer 2016. An estimated 600,000 tourists will attend the Soccer World Cup, mainly from the Americas.
While most tourists enjoy Brazil’s beautiful sites and beaches, many individuals travel to Brazil for sex tourism or while attending these major sporting events, will exploit women and children in the sex trade. Brazil is one of the countries in Latin America and the Caribbean with the highest incidences of sex tourism, along with the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Venezuela and Puerto Rico.
Posted on 15 April 2014
As the European Parliament elections are getting closer, we need to make sure that women’s rights and gender equality will be at the core of the policies and work of the new European institutions. Let’s join forces to contact all candidates and make sure that they support the Manifesto of the European Women’s Lobby "Act now for her future, commit to gender equality!".
The more candidates support EWL Manifesto, the more gender equality will be taken into account both in the European elections discussion, and in the new European institutions. Getting many supporters is therefore important at all levels: it will help you to address women’s rights at local and national level, and it will help all of us to push for a Europe that promotes gender equality.
This week is the last plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg. We know that many MEPs are answering their emails, and many of them are candidates. So please take action this week and contact your candidates!
You can use the template message below to contact them, and please inform us of their answer!
You can also send twitter messages to your candidates, using this template:
@xxx Ready to commit to #genderequality? Listen to #EuropeanWomensVoice and say YES to our #EP2014 Manifesto! @EuropeanWomen
You will find here the list of MEPs who have already endorsed EWL Manifesto. Let’s get much more until the European elections! Thanks for your support!
In a month, women and men from all over Europe will vote for new European institutions.
We turn to you to ask you to listen to the voices of women’s organisations: do you want a Europe which fosters gender equality and promotes and protects women’s and girls’ rights?
Last month, on the occasion of International Women’s Day, the European Women’s Lobby unveiled its Manifesto for the European elections "Act now for her future, commit to gender equality!", which comprises concrete and realistic demands for a Europe realising gender equality and supporting women’s human rights (see the Manifesto attached). These demands are based on the reality of women’s lives, as experienced by our members and all the women and girls that our member organisations are supporting and assisting every day in all parts of Europe.
Will you be the champion of gender equality and endorse EWL Manifesto “Act now for her future, commit to gender equality!”?
Realising equality between women and men is crucial at all levels, from the local to the European. We hope that you will show your commitment and endorse EWL Manifesto.
On behalf of the millions of women and men in Europe, who believe in gender equality as a tool for social justice, solidarity and dignity, we thank you for your attention, and hope to read your answer soon.
Posted on 21 March 2014
[Brussels, 21 March 2014] Together with the European Women’s Lobby, sign and share our petition calling on the current and future Presidents of the European Commission to establish 2016 as European Year to End Violence against Women and girls.
We have 8 months until the new Commission’s President gets appointed to get a critical mass of signatures. We need you to make our voice heard!
We also have a great opportunity now as the European Parliament adopted two weeks ago a resolution with recommendations to the European Commission on combating violence against women, including a demand to establish a European Year to End violence against women.
By establishing a European Year to end violence against women and girls, the EU would play a leading role in raising awareness on violence against women, and at the same time propose concrete measures to act against the perpetuation of violence against women.
We cannot miss the opportunity to say that: We want 2016 to be the European Year to End Violence against Women! Women cannot wait any longer!
#2016EUYear to #endVAW
Sign and share this petition:
In all our actions linked to One Billion Rising 2014 Brussels, the EWl has been calling the EU to:
Posted on 11 March 2014
[Vilnius, 8 March 2014. Juratė Juškaitė and Aušra Karklytė - Manoteises] International Women’s Solidarity day was greeted near the Seimas, the Parliament of Lithuania, not with the tulips though, as still is the case in many Post-Soviet countries, but with the slogan “Abortion ban is not the solution”. Several hundreds of protesters urged the Parliament not to treat women as incubators for children; for those, who aim to increase the birth rate in Lithuania – the protesters suggested improving social services for families instead.
Situation of concern for women’s rights in Lithuania
In the end of spring session (May-June) Lithuanian Parliament will vote on the adoption of the draft law on “Law on the protection of a life in a pre-natal phase” and accompanying legislative projects, otherwise known as “abortion ban bill”. The law considers abortion a criminal act punishable for up to three years imprisonment. The bill equates doctors who help to terminate pregnancies to the murderers of unborn children. It blatantly limits woman’s right to choose by allowing terminating pregnancy in only two cases: if it poses an evident threat to life of a mother or if a pregnancy is a result of a rape.
On the 8th of March, the speakers came on the podium, while rally participants were holding two meters high poster with the words “A hanger is for clothing; let’s leave it like it is, no for abortion ban”. This poster was sending a message for the Seimas that nowadays abortion prohibition amounts to returning country to the 20th century, when abortions were often self-imposed using wire hangers. Therefore, a wire hanger has become an international symbol of illegal abortions, not worth the restoring. The current regulation in Lithuania allows terminating the pregnancy before the twelfth week.
R. Šalaševičiūtė: Sexual violence may cause abortion
Affiliated Member of the Parliament and the former Children’s Rights Ombudsperson, Ms. Šalaševičiūtė, in her speech has emphasised that if enacted the abortion ban would result in many negative consequences for women: “60 percent of women suffer domestic violence, and one in three has experienced sexual abuse. Also, 20 percent of people are living below the poverty line in Lithuania, majority of whom are women. This may be the reasons why you would decide to terminate the pregnancy,” - said Ms. Šalaševičiūtė, representative of the Social Democratic Party in Lithuania. MP Masiulis, who participated in the rally on behalf of the Liberal Movement Party, has spoken very poignant. According to him, politicians proposing such laws have some personal problems and we should do more to take care of their needs: “I propose to introduce a brain abortion for those who seek to outlaw other person’s freedom of choice. Women and men are planning their own lives and no one needs to interfere,” - said a leader of the Liberal Movement.
Another member of the Social Democratic Party, Ms. Jolanta Bielskienė, echoed the assembly and she said that the Parliament is not a contraceptive thus abortion ban will not stop unplanned pregnancies. Among the participants of the protest there were seen several MPs from the Social Democratic Party: Ms. Giedrė Purvaneckienė, Ms. Marija Aušrinė Pavilionienė, Mr. Julius Sabatauskas, Ms. Sigita Burbienė.
Protester: I gave birth not because abortions were prohibited
After the speeches the participants of the rally were invited to write their messages addressed for the MPs, who proposed the abortion ban. The protesters have expressed their outrage on the colourful sheets of paper that were glued to wire hangers. They were emphasising that a matter that will have a dramatic impact upon Lithuanian women is decided by male-dominated Seimas. Male MPs never were pregnant and never will be. Messages written by protesters also expressed outrage of the Catholic church interference in the legislation and willingness to impose norms in accordance with their religion for the rest of society: “My body is not your property”; “Instead of stupidity – more sex education, not a religious dictatorship”; “I was giving birth not because abortions were not allowed”; “I want to live in a state where I am a person, not an incubator” - wrote the rally participants. The protesters hanged the wire hangers on racks for clothes, thus symbolically placing them for the intended purpose and offering members of the Seimas not to send back the Lithuanian women to the inter-war period, when the wire hangers were used at the time to carry-out illegal abortions.
Please sign the petition:http://www.laisva.lt/322/my-body-belongs-to-me-not-to-the-parliament/
FB page of the Lithuanian Initiative “For Safe and Legal Abortions”: https://www.facebook.com/uzteiseiaborta
Pictures: Laura Vancevičienė
Original Source in Lithuanian: http://manoteises.lt/straipsnis/mot...
Posted on 4 March 2014
[Vilnius, 4 February 2014, Iniciatyva „Už teisę į saugų ir legalų abortą” - Iniciative for the right to safe and legal abortion] The Lithuanian Parliament is currently deliberating the “Law on the protection of a life in a pre-natal phase” and accompanying legislative projects, otherwise known as the “abortion ban bill”. The Committee on Health Affairs has already approved the bill and those who initiated the law expect it will be passed by the Parliament in Spring. The bill is a dangerous violation of basic women’s rights, blatantly limiting the right to terminate pregnancy in two cases only: if a pregnancy poses an evident threat to life of a mother or if a if a pregnancy is the result of rape. Even in the latter instance, the victim of a rape has only 12 weeks to prove the rape case and terminate the pregnancy. Also, if approved, the bill would equate women who terminate pregnancies with the murderers of unborn children, and abortion would be considered a criminal act punishable by up to three years in prison.
The number of abortions in Lithuania is constantly and purposefully declining. To continue to decrease the need for abortion, consistent preventative measures such as sex education, affordable and available contraception, and an encouraging social and financial environment must be introduced. However, the guaranteed right to abortion in case of an unwanted pregnancy must remain intact. Women must have access to safe and legal abortions, so that women seeking to terminate pregnancy will not be persecuted and will not risk their lives in search of illegal alternatives.
Everyone is invited to sign this on-line petition and to join the Lithuanian Citizens’ Initiative for the Right to a Safe and Legal Abortion, and tell the Lithuanian Parliament that women’ bodies belong to women!
Take pictures of yourself or of the members of your organization with pro- choice posters in Lithuanian and to send them to the Embassy of Lithuania of your country of residence.
Please, send the pictures to the Initiative’s official page on the Facebook and we’ll post them in a gallery for the cause:
The Lithuanian Citizens’ Initiative for the Right to a Safe and Legal Abortion is also organizing a demonstration to support women’s right to choose. On March 8th, International Women’s Day, everyone who believes that women’ bodies are not state property is invited to join for informative talks and slam poetry and for rally near the Lithuanian Parliament. Those who are abroad and cannot come to Lithuania, are invited to rally near the Lithuanian embassies in Europe to protest against this law. Every voice is appreciated!
The suggested slogans in Lithuanian:
The initiative’s official blog in Lithuanian: http://priesabortudraudima.wordpress.com/page/2/
Action supported by Women’s issues information centre , Lithuanian member of the EWL.