Women represent 52% of the European population and yet men are still over-represented in all the European instances of decision-making. It means that the majority of citizens’ voices are not heard and therefore many of their issues are not taken into account. It is time for the European Union, i.e. the European Parliament, to take more concrete actions to guarantee that the European Union also works for and with women, guaranteeing them equal rights and opportunities.

Women’s rights

Therefore, the ask the future Members of the European Parliament to:

1. Make sure women are equally included in decision-making
It is not a true democracy when half of the population is not fairly represented and is not
participating in decisions that concern everyone. The European Parliament needs to ensure the equal representation of women and men in political decision-making across all the European Union bodies, including the European Commission. It should also take stringent actions and adopt a zero tolerance policy towards discrimination based on sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation in all the institutions and Parliaments in Europe.

2. Guarantee that women are free from violence
It is primordial that the European institutions act, to guarantee that all women can live a life free
from violence. The European Parliament should follow up on the ratification and implementation of the Istanbul Convention by the European Union. It should also strive for a Directive on Violence against Women, also including prostitution as a form of violence against women.

3. Guarantee women’s independence throughout their life course
The European Parliament should first act to guarantee women’s equal economic independence by closing the gender pay, pension and poverty gaps; by introducing a “care guarantee” as well as ensuring that the macro-economic framework seeks to progress equality between women and men. Gender budgeting should also be at the core of the European budget which is a direct competence of
the European Parliament.

For more information, see:

Manifesto – 2019 European Elections (in English)

Manifesto – 2019 European Elections (in other languages)

Publications & Articles

Factsheet on the Istanbul Convention 

Report – European Women’s Voice: Women’s Economic Independence in Times of Austerity

Political Parties On Issues

  • European People's Party
  • Socialists and Democrats
  • ALDE
  • European Greens
  • European Free Alliance
  • ECR Group
  • European Left



The On Our Watch project brings together Civil Society Organisations working on all kind of topics. As representatives of and in direct contact with citizens, organisations have a strong role to play in holding the European Parliament accountable to the public. By joining forces in the context of the #EUelections2019 (23-26 May), On Our Watch offers a comprehensive overview of the key issues that European citizens care about.

Want to join? Get in touch! Contact: christian.skriverik[@]  | Address: Place du Luxembourg 2, B-1050, Brussels | Phone: +32 2 508 30 83