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Economic and social justice for women is more pressing than ever!

Date

08 Mar 2010

Sections

EU Priorities 2020

Strasbourg, 8/03/10

 

The financial, economic, and social crisis of capitalism in Europe and globally are generating greater inequalities, precarity, unemployment, and poverty in our societies. Existing inequalities are being reinforced, including between women and men. The feminisation of poverty is not only a world-wide reality; it is also a European reality.

 

Inequality clearly has a gendered face. In terms of employment conditions and salary levels, women are more likely than men to be under-employed or without a job, to lack social protection or to be dependent on their spouse, and to have limited access to and control over economic and financial resources.

 

It is time the EU took action to address women's increased poverty and precarity.  In this context, the proposed EU 2020 does not respond to the challenges we are facing. We need a new European strategy for social development and progress, to improve women's working conditions, to ensure increased investment in health and education, and to reshape EU polices for care of children and other dependent persons.

 

The forthcoming, new EU Roadmap/strategy on gender equality must also address the issues of women's poverty and precarity if it is going to be an efficient EU instrument for women's rights. This is why Ilda Figueiredo from the GUE/NGL, who is the European Parliament rapporteur on this new important strategy, is highlighting economic and social policies in her work.  

 

Women's life choices also continue to be limited in other ways. Some countries in Europe still do not guarantee women access to sexual and reproductive services, including safe and legal abortion. Even in countries where women on paper have the right to access abortion and other reproductive health related services, the possibilities are sometimes limited in practice for many women – because of unrealistic time delays, the right for doctors to refuse to perform abortions, and high costs. We have to mobilise at both the national and European level to change this!

 

Lothar Bisky, President of the GUE/NGL group concludes: "All this encourages us as members of the GUE/NGL Group to see the struggle for gender justice as an integral part of social justice. We want to strive for a politics that guarantees equal rights for everyone and that enables them to live in dignity with decent pay and secure jobs with equal educational opportunities, cultural participation and mobility. At the same time, gender justice is for us an intrinsic value that goes beyond social issues and that is equally extended to culture, power and status."

 

GUE/NGL Members of the Committee on Women's rights and gender equality:

Eva-Britt Svensson, Sweden (Chair of the Committee)

Ilda Figueiredo, Portugal (GUE/NGL Coordinator for the Committee on Women's rights)

Kartika Liotard, Netherlands

Cornelia Ernst, Germany

 


GUE/NGL Members of the Committee on Women's rights and gender equality of the European Parliament choose to highlight economic an social justice issues for women during a seminar organised on 24/2/2010, in view of the International women's day .

 


To read more about economic and social justice for women, please see the programme, outcomes and interventions from GUE/NGL seminar 24/2/2010:


http://www.guengl.eu/showPage.jsp?ID=8082&AREA=6&HIGH=1

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