Press Releases

EWL calls on new woman President of the EP Metsola for ambitious women’s rights measures

[Brussels, 18 January 2022] Following Roberta Metsola’s election as the new President of the European Parliament, the European Women’s Lobby calls on President Metsola to champion ambitious measures to advance women’s rights in the EU and to advocate for significant achievements on equality between women and men, including on Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights.

A woman heading the institution representing EU citizens is a significant opportunity not only to ensure women’s rights are high on the European agenda, but also to be a role model for all women and girls in the European Union. Seeing a woman in such a high decision-making position brings high hopes to the EWL.

The EWL especially expects a leadership that will push for ambitious measures on women’s rights as a whole, and in particular:

  1. Push for the adoption of an EU directive on all forms of VAWG; this Directive must recognise violence against women and girls as a crime under the European Treaties, it must build from the standards in the Istanbul Convention and take a step further by concretely addressing sexual exploitation and tackling new forms of violence, such as online violence;
  2. Support the European Commission in laying the foundation of a Care Deal for Europe based on a feminist economy approach, where care is recognised as essential to our economy, grounded in human rights, and with investment in quality, accessible and affordable care infrastructures and services;
  3. Take concrete measures to reach true parity democracy, especially ahead of the European Election 2024, by making mandatory that candidate lists are composed of an equal number of female and male candidates and ensuring female candidates are placed at electable places;
  4. Ensure support for women’s rights organisations as they provide essential services and have been severely impacted by Covid-19;
  5. Continue supporting the unlocking of the Women on Board Directive at the Council level;
  6. Support unconditional access to comprehensive Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights.
  7. We wish for a fruitful cooperation with the new elected President of the European Parliament to progress on all these topics and we stand ready to continue supporting EU decision-makers in advancing women’s rights and reaching equal representation and participation of women in decision-making.

EWL Secretary General, Konstantina Vardaramatou, highlighted:
“Women are still persistently under-represented in decision-making and only make up 34% of ministers and 33% of parliamentarians in the EU Member States. The election of a woman as the European Parliament President is a strong signal. Yet, we call on President Metsola to be the voice of all women by championing ambitious measures for concrete progress on women’s rights. In particular, we count on her to defend the position of the European Parliament for better access to comprehensive Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights for all women in Europe, including to guarantee access to safe and legal abortion.”


Claire Fourçans, Policy and Campaigns Director EWL

For media enquiries:
Adriana Paradiso, Communications & Media Coordinator EWL
+32 465576876

Photo credit:
(CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)
Belgium - Brussels - June 2015
© European Union / Tim De Backer

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EWL event "Progress towards a Europe free from all forms of male violence" to mark the 10th aniversary of the Istanbul Convention, 12 May 2021.

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