EWL News

More than 70 MEPs call on the EU Commission to take bold action to end violence against women and girls

Brussels, 10 December 2021

In early 2022, the European Commission is expected to put forward its proposal for an EU Directive on all forms of violence against women and girls. This is a great step in combatting and preventing this violence and an opportunity not to miss. To ensure the proposal is as ambitious as needed to protect all women in Europe from all forms of violence, EWL has gathered support from Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) in a pledge calling for a strong Directive on all forms of violence against women and girls.

Violence against women and girls threatens the security of half of the population in the EU. 1 in 3 of women in Europe is affected by physical and/or sexual violence and 1 in 2 women in the EU have experienced sexual harassment since the age of 15, bearing enormous physical and psychological consequences for the rest of their lives. But violence against women and girls does not just bring harm to the individuals, it has a heavy cost for the whole society. According to the most recent estimates by the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), the economic cost for violence against women and girls in the EU amounts to €289 billion a year.

Already signed by 72 MEPs across political parties, the pledge calls on the President of the European Commission , Commissioner Dalli and Commissioner Johansson to address all forms of violence against women and girls. The undersigned believe in equality between women and men and stress that this can only be achieved when everybody works together to end violence against women and girls, a plague that affects millions throughout Europe on a daily basis.

The issue has been under the spotlight at the European Parliament, who recently took an absolute majority position in favour of adding gender-based violence against women and girls to the list of Eurocrimes. The EWL MEP pledge builds upon this historic stance and calls for the upcoming Directive to include this violence in the European Treaties - thus providing the Institutions a clear legal basis to tackle all forms of male violence.

While appreciating the European Commission’s efforts in this direction, MEPs also underline the need for the upcoming Directive to place gender equality at its heart, to cover all forms of crime covered by the Istanbul Convention, including online violence and sexual exploitation.

The upcoming Directive has all the potential to be a turning point in the long history of the fight for the elimination of violence against women and girls. For this, it will be crucial that all EU Institutions and Member States stand with parliamentarians and civil society: together, we can disrupt the continuum of violence and create an EU where all women and girls live free from violence and the fear of it.

  • Read the pledge here:
  • and read here the official response to the pledge from the President of the European Commission Ursula Von der Leyen:

List of signatories to the EWL pledge in support of the horizontal Directive on combatting and preventing all forms of violence against women and girls:

Isabella Adinolfi (EPP)
Alviina Alametsä (Greens/EFA)
Atidzhe Alieva-Veli (Renew)
Abir Al-Sahlani (Renew)
Barry Andrews (Renew)
Marc Angel (S&D)
Robert Biedron (S&D)
Gabriele Bischoff (S&D)
Michael Bloss (Greens/EFA)
Simona Bonafè (S&D)
Silvie Brunet (Renew)
Delara Burkhardt (S&D)
Fabio Massimo Castaldo (NI)
Deirdre Clune (EPP)
Katalin Cseh (Renew)
Clare Daly (Left/GUE)
Rosa D´Amato (Greens/EFA)
Cyrus Engerer (S&D)
Eleonora Evi (Greens/EFA)
Frances Fitzgerald (EPP)
Heléne Fritzon (S&D)
Ibán García del Blanco (S&D)
Iratxe Garcia Perez (S&D)
Evelyne Gebhardt (S&D)
Jens Geier (S&D)
Sylvie Guillaume (S&D)
Irena Joveva (Renew)
Marina Kaljurand (S&D)
Petra Kammerevert (S&D)
Seán Kelly (EPP)
Dietmar Köster (S&D)
Arba Kokalari (EPP)
Elena Kountoura (Left/GUE)
Constanze Krehl (S&D)
Maria Manuel Leitão Marques (S&D)
Predrag Fred Matic (S&D)
Karen Melchior (Renew)
Salvatore de Meo (EPP)
Alin Mituta (Renew)
Niklas Nienaß (Greens/EFA)
Maria Noichl (S&D)
Urmas Paet (Renew)
Piernicola Pedicini (Greens/EFA)
Giuseppina Picierno (S&D)
Manu Pineda (Left/GUE)
Rovana Plumb (S&D)
Terry Reintke (Greens/EFA)
Luisa Regimenti (EPP)
Evelyn Regner (S&D)
Sira Rego (Left/GUE)
Thijs Reuten (S&D)
Diana Riba i Giner (Greens/EFA)
Eugenia Rodríguez Palop (Left/GUE)
Maria Soraya Rodríguez Ramos (Renew)
Mounir Satouri (Greens/EFA)
Stéphane Séjourné (Renew)
Michal Šimečka (Renew)
Birgit Sippel (S&D)
Sylwia Spurek (Greens/EFA)
Ramona Strugariu (Renew)
Paul Tang (S&D)
Vera Tax (S&D)
Irène Tolleret (Renew)
Ernest Urtasun (Greens/EFA)
Monika Vana (Greens/EFA)
Hilde Vautmans (Renew)
Henna Virkkunen (EPP)
Petar Vitanov (S&D)
Bettina Vollath (S&D)
Maria Walsh (EPP)
Michal Wiezik (EPP)
Tiemo Wölken (S&D)

Latest video

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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