Last week, Nobel Laureates Jody Williams, Shirin Ebadi and Leymah Gbowee attended the launch of a new platform spearheaded by France to promote the rights of women and equality in the European Union. Minister of Women’s Rights, City, and Youth & Sports Najat Belkacem-Vallaud and Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo presented the initiative in honour of the 70th anniversary of women’s right to vote in France.
The Platform for Women’s Rights in Europe recognizes that gender equality is a fundamental principle in core charters of the European Union. The Platform also outlines persistent challenges to gender equality in the EU – women still earn 16% less than men per hour and only represent 27% of national parliaments and 18% of company boards.
The Platform urges the European Union to redouble its efforts to ensure gender equality within its own institutions and put girls’ and women’s access to social, economic and health services at the heart of its policies. The Platform intends to secure the EU’s role as a leader in the fight for women’s rights around the world.