Sveriges Kvinnolobby har idag skickat ett brev till EU:s Kommissionär för jämställdhet Vĕra Jourová med krav på att inte inkludera flera diskrimineringsgrunder i EU:s nya strategi för jämställdhet mellan kvinnor och män. Brevet har också skickat till kommissionens ordförande Jean-Claude Juncker och vice ordförande Frans Timmermans.

RE: The Commission’s proposal to include other discriminatory grounds than gender in the new EU Strategy for equality between women and men

Dear Ms Commissioner, dear Ms Jourová,

The Swedish Women’s Lobby very much appreciates the Commission’s work to put forward a proposal for a new EU Strategy on Gender Equality. However, it is of great concern to us to learn about the proposal to include other discriminatory grounds than gender in the strategy. We, as well as the entire women’s movement in Europe, are strongly against such a development. We ask you kindly to clarify the situation to us.

The following comments, shared by the Swedish Women’s Lobby, have been presented to the European Parliament by the European Women’s Lobby.

  • Commissioner Jourová has twice promised the EP to deliver a strategy on equality between women and men. Since gender equality is a key fundamental EU value, a strategy on equality between women and men is needed. Without such a strategy the Commission has no means to deliver its work. It is a question of credibility and accountability for the EC. It is also about having resources, including staff, for the EC to implement the strategy.
  • UN member states just adopted the CSW 59 declaration which reaffirms their commitment to the Beijing Platform for Action. The Beijing Platform for Action stresses separate and strong institutional mechanisms for women’s rights. For the EC to follow suite, a dedicated instrument for equality between women and men is required.
  • We cannot accept the dilution of women’s rights into a general action plan on diversity or anti-discrimination.
  • The EP has been asking for a roadmap on LGBT. We do not oppose that, but it should be held separate from the strategy on equality between women and men.
  • We want to see the EC taking stock of the demands of the EP, of the resolutions adopted in the last years, some of them being very important: on violence against women, on prostitution and sexual exploitation, and on equality between women and men.

Gender equality between women and men as a structural pattern should not be confused with the right of individuals not to be discriminated against on the basis of sexual orientation. Nor shall any other ground of discrimination for the individual be compounded with others. To reach the desired results, action at both structural and individual level requires accuracy from the perspective in question.

Sincerely yours,

Gertrud Åström

President, the Swedish Women’s Lobby