Op zaterdagmiddag 25 maart 2017 heeft het Liberale Vrouwennetwerk een speeddate bijeenkomst georganiseerd om vrouwen te inspireren zich te kandideren voor de gemeenteraadsverkiezingen in 2018. Zo’n 35 dames en een heer, VVD leden en niet-leden, hebben kennis kunnen maken met VVD-politici. De gemeenteraadsverkiezingen volgend jaar maart lijken wellicht nog ver weg, maar in de tweede helft van dit jaar worden de kandidatenlijsten opgesteld. “Het LVN ziet dat het aantal vrouwen in gemeenteraden helaas nog steeds te wensen overlaat”, aldus Karima Bouchtaoui, van de stuurgroep LVN. In 2014 was slechts 28,3% van de raadsleden vrouw en was 20% van de wethouders een vrouw. Het aantal vrouwelijke burgemeesters stijgt, vooral in kleinere gemeentes maar in de grote gemeentes zijn het er bar weinig. Tijd voor actie!
De Do’s and dont’s in de gemeenteraad
De bijeenkomst begon met een goede lunch om te kunnen netwerken met elkaar. Gedurende de speeddates zijn de dames in gesprek geweest met Chantal Nijkerken, Hayke Veldman, Eric Ziengs, Paulien Geerdink en Sabine Koebrugge. Vragen als “Hoe kun je als vrouw actief worden in de lokale politiek?”, ” Wat zijn de do’s and dont’s als je gemeenteraad in wil?”, ”Hoe vind je de juiste balans in raadswerk en privé?” “Hoe loopt de procedure om je kandidaat te stellen?” zijn besproken met elkaar. De ervaringen en persoonlijke verhalen van de VVD-politici werden door alle aanwezigen als helder en motiverend ervaren. De gehele bijeenkomst was een groot succes: de nodige visitekaartjes zijn uitgewisseld, er zijn goede gesprekken gevoerd maar het belangrijkste is dat er een aantal dames na de bijeenkomst voor zichzelf heeft besloten zich te willen kandideren voor de gemeenteraadsverkiezingen. En dat was het doel van deze speeddate, aldus LVN-voorzitter Marijke Vos-Maan in haar slotwoord. Op naar 21 maart 2018 met veel talentvolle vrouwen op de lijst!
Many members of INLW including members of the Board attended the 70th Congress of LI in Andorra. Present were, Mireia Huerta, Silvia Flury (both left on Friday), Margaret de Vos van Steenwijk, Khadija El Morabit, Joaquima Alemany, Maysing Yang (who all left on Saturday morning), Ruth Richardson and Lysbeth van Valkenburg who both stayed till the end of the Congress.
The main theme was the Liberal Manifesto 2017. During the past year the new LI Manifesto was written under the chairmanship of Professor Karl-Heinz Paqué, Deputy Chairman of Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom. INLW contributed at several moments during the past 1 ½ year to the content of the text.
On the first evening, there was a dinner hosted by the Catalan Group of Liberal International, where we could do a lot of networking.
On Thursday afternoon, Margaret de Vos and Khadija El Morabit participated at the meeting of Regional organizations, such as ALDE party, the Arab Liberal Federation (ALF), the African Liberal Network (ALN) and the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD) and Red Liberal de América de América Latino (Relial), where we suggested that there should be more cooperation between for instance INLW and the different regional liberal federations. It was decided to follow this up. The first action thereto will be that Margaret de Vos van Steenwijk will attend the next CALD women’s Caucus Congress in Taipei in August 2017.
The members to be elected for the LI Bureau gave their introductions in the morning, among the candidates was our Deputy President Hakima El Haité. She gave an inspiring and clear speech on the position of Liberal International; the importance of the Environment for our future and the actions we have to take as Liberals!
During the Friday afternoon, the final discussion was held about the Manifesto and its local perspective. Also, the proposed amendments to the Resolutions were discussed in working groups. The INLW resolutions were amended and adopted to be accepted in the General Meeting on Saturday.
In the evening, the Group paid a visit to the Andorran Parliament, the Casa de la Vall, which is the historic “Old Parliament House” as well the new modern Andorran Parliament building (2014). Welcoming remarks were given by the President of the Andorran Parliament, Mr Zamora, Josep Forné, MP, President of the Andorran Liberal Parliamentary Group and Mrs. Carine Montaner, MP. We were given a charming performance of a Andorran dancing group.
On Saturday during the day several working sessions were held on “Liberalism in the 21st century”; “How to make liberals win again” and “Migration and Economic integration: How to open borders”.
In the afternoon, the Congress was closed with the adoption of the historic Liberal Manifesto with the signing ceremony of the LI Manifesto! INLW was represented on stage by the Treasurer Lysbeth van Valkenburg.
The farewell dinner was hosted by the Liberal Party of Andorra with a desert of an enormous 70th Birthday cake!
Hans Juli Hakima El
v. Baalen Minoves Haité
Russian Human Rights Commissioner supported YABLOKO’s idea of establishing a post of Ombudsman for Women’s Rights
Based on the articles in Novaya Gazeta by Vera Yurchenko
According to RIA Novosti, Tatyana Moskalkova, Russian Human Rights Commissioner, supported YABLOKO’s idea of establishing a post of Women’s Ombudsperson. According to Moskalkova, this could enhance and balance the institution of the Commissioner in general. She also added that she advocated establishing the posts of special ombudsmen if people considered this necessary. Earlier YABLOKO had proposed to establish the post of Commissioner for Women’s Rights. YABLOKO had proposed to create such a post both on the federal and the regional level within the framework of the alternative strategy for protection of women. “Due to the fact that shortly before “the International Women’s Day” 8 March the government approved its Strategy for Women, “we could not fail to respond to the adoption of such a document, since YABLOKO is the only registered Russian party with a Gender Faction,” Emilia Slabunova, YABLOKO Chair, said. According to Slabunova, at a round table on 25 April, YABLOKO examined the government’s strategy and presented an alternative version, which included, among other things, the initiative to establish the institution of the Commissioner for Women’s Rights.
“The Ombudsman for Women’s Rights will have to ensure the implementation of the national strategy not in words but in deeds,” Slabunova said.
“Gender equality is an important task to achieve in Russia. A lot of problems have accumulated in the women’s community: wage inequality (women’s salaries constitute 2/3 of men’s wages), inadequate representation in government bodies, poor living conditions (millions of women in the country still carry water in buckets and rinse their clothes in ice-holes). The Commissioner should take up the solution of these problems,” Slabunova stressed. She also added that the party had been developing a set of proposals to improve the strategy for women and this alternative strategy should be submitted to the government soon. “This is another small step towards victory in the struggle for gender equality. We in the Gender Faction spoke about the need to establish the post of Commissioner for Women’s Rights from the moment of foundation of our faction in 2006, and before that we had the Gender Commission. The Council for Consolidation of the Women’s Movement has been functioning since 2008. And now we have the official opinion of Tatyana Moskalkova. “As I always say, little strokes fell great oaks!” Galina Mikhaleva, Chair of the Gender Faction commented on the news.
Establishing of the post for the Commissioner for Women’s Rights, introduction of quotas for women in power and promotion of paternity – these and other measures are contained in the alternative strategy for women developed by YABLOKO. According to YABLOKO, the current strategy, approved by the government in March 2017, is declarative and does not contain specific measures to ensure equality between men and women.
Emilia Slabunova, Chair of Yabloko, and Olga Radayeva, Deputy Chair of Yabloko’s Gender Faction, were present at the congress of Liberal International in Andorra this May 2017
This year’s INLW General Meeting and Side Event took place in Andorra during the Liberal International Congress May 2017.
During the General Meeting, a few new members were appointed in the INLW Board.
We welcomed Ruth Richardson as Member of the Board. And we affirmed the appointment of Patricia Olamendi as Vice President of INLW for Latin America and Leticia Gutíerrez as Member of the Board. Both were present at the last GM in Mexico 2015, but had not yet been formally appointed by the GM.
We discussed the two resolutions that INLW had put to the LI Congress:
1: Child Abuse
2: Women water and Climate Change
Both were accepted unanimously on the last day during the LI Congress administrative session.
The Liberal Manifesto 2017, which was to be adopted by the LI Congress was discussed as far as the chapter dedicated to Women and Gender Equality is concerned:
“While the 20th century saw significant progress on the rights of women, inequalities for women, who represent more than half of the world’s population, still remain, especially in the uneven distribution of property and political representation, as well as the widespread use of violence against women and the denial of their sexual and reproductive rights. Some countries even retain these inequalities by law, denying women the right to vote, own property, benefit from education and enjoy personal freedom. We will therefore continue to fight fiercely for the rights of women.”
After the INLW GM we held a Side Event in which we celebrated our 20th official anniversary and discussed how women’s empowerment in Andorra is being achieved.
First though Joaquima Alemany Roca presented her book on “Women and Liberalism”.
The first 2 copies were presented to INLW President Margaret de Vos van Steenwijk and LI President Juli Minoves.
Margaret de Vos gave an insight of 20 years of INLW illustrated by some photos.
Carine Montaner, Andorra MP, spoke about the Economic Empowerment of Women in Andorra.
Also, Vice President Maysing Yang gave some details about the situation in Asia of empowerment of Women.
Starting up the discussion, CALD caucus Chair (Women’s Caucus of Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats), Mrs Jayanthi Balaguru took the floor to add her experience within CALD caucus.
During the lively discussion between the attendees and the panel, we dwelled on the fruitful relation INLW has had with Liberal International in its development to the organization that INLW has now become. A very important fact therein was the recognition of INLW as an NGO in Special Consultative Status at the UN ECOSOC in 2003, for which INLW received invaluable support from now President of LI, Juli Minoves at that time Foreign Minister of Andorra.
All in all it was made clear by the various speakers and the discussion, that the mission of INLW, “to fight the inequalities in the position of women in all fields and in all corners of the world”, is still very important!
The Parallel Event was well attended by many Congress members.
Resolution number: 02
Submitted by: INLW (International Network of Liberal Women)
The Congress of Liberal International, convened in Andorra, on 20 May 2017
Climate Change has significant impacts on fresh water sources, affecting the availability of water use for domestic and productive tasks. The consequences of the increased frequency in floods and droughts are far reaching, particularly for vulnerable groups, including women who are often responsible for water management at the household level
Around the world, women are coming together to address their own needs for water and sanitation. Their strength and courage transforms communities who are facing a huge change in the climate. In huge parts of the world such as Africa, Asia and South America water is a constant problem
Pursuing the Paris Agreement and COP22 decision 21/CP22 on climate change and gender, water and sanitation are at the very core of sustainable development, SDG 6 is critical for people, planet and prosperity.
Climate change presents the biggest threat to development, and its widespread, unprecedented impacts disproportionately burden the poorest and most vulnerable. SDG 13 aims to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impact.
Considering as examples:
In Mongolia (Nomads), women, families and farmers are in constant need of water due to the dryness. In the summer, it is getting harder to grow and harvest grass and autumnal rains have virtually disappeared. Shepherds have not enough fodder to feed the animals in the winter, weakening the animals. Climate change is one of the factors responsible for this loss of livestock.
The impacts of climate change on the agricultural forestry sectors in Latin America are becoming increasingly worrisome.
In Nicaragua and in Ecuador climate change requires that women rethink ways of farming. The women face serious water supply problems, insufficient for harvesting crops.
In Peru recently the authorities declared the intense rains, overflowing rivers, mudslides and flooding the worst in two decades in Peru. Often women and children are the biggest victims through the extreme flooding, isolating hospitals and small villages and homes washed away by mudslides, resulting in many deaths of women and children. Then resulting in a bad health and sanitation situation with no latrines which hits especially women and girls.
Liberal International calls on all member parties and other liberal organizations to urge their governments around the world to:
Encourage gender-sensitive frameworks in developing policies to address climate change and reducing gender gap of climate change-induced social, economic and environmental vulnerabilities assisting developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices through, inter alia, the Green Climate Fund.
Raise help and funds around the World and come together to help women and children
Invest in empowerment of women to change their surrounding world,
Implement and improve living conditions with measures to help women and children with access to clean water and sanitation, which helps sustain and prolong life of the poor population.
Prepare for and build women’s resilience and adapt to climate change impacts, increasing education and training opportunities for women to develop local resilience plans to address the effects of climate change; Create economic opportunities for small farmers in remote communities
Improve river basin management and save deltas (main)
Promote a balanced participation of men and women in climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts, including in governance positions
Enable a local environment supportive of sustainable and inclusive water resources management and economic growth, by promoting public private alliances and by improving gender balance in negotiation processes.
Resolution number: 03
Title: Child Abuse
Submitted by: INLW (International Network of Liberal Women)
The Congress of Liberal International, convened in Andorra, on 20 May 2017
World Health Organization (WHO), distinguishes four types of child maltreatment: physical abuse; sexual abuse; neglect and negligent treatment; emotional abuse; and exploitation
Child abuse can result in immediate adverse physical effects but it is also strongly associated with developmental problems and with many chronic physical and psychological effects, including
subsequent ill-health, including higher rates of chronic conditions, high-risk health behaviours and shortened lifespan.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), of which Article 19 calls on all political parties to take all appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to protect the child from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s) or any other person who has the care of the child.
Child maltreatment is a global problem with serious life-long consequences
Despite recent national surveys in several low- and middle-income countries, data from many countries are still lacking
Worldwide because Child abuse occurs irrespective of gender, social standing, ethnicity, or religion. International child abuse statistics are difficult to come by due to the difficulty in keeping track of numbers and the hidden nature of some forms of abuse even in “financially sound” countries. Even though many countries keep no or inadequate records, politics are not doing enough. This is why we must raise awareness of the negative impact that violence and abuse have on women and children and rid society of abuse permanently.
Worldwide… because violence against children takes many forms, including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, and may involve neglect or deprivation. Violence occurs in many settings, including the home, school, community and over the Internet.
Worldwide…because thousands or refugee children are being abused exploited and arbitrarily detained.
Worldwide…because in many countries children are used as target for emotional abuse and of neglect. Is known that child abuse happens constantly in war zones, in schools and in child marketing.
Worldwide…because child abuse happens in advertising, the food and beverage industry is marketing our children and youth to sickness or even death
The nature of international communication means that abuse occurs across international borders.
Calls on upon member parties and other liberal organizations to urge their governments around the world to bring this issue to attention: Raise the alert and protect our future generations from ritual and sexual abuse.
Pay special attention to and raise the awareness of child abuse in war zones.
Draw attention to child abuse in schools.
Let political parties intervene and put an end to inappropriate marketing to children
Draw attention to children used as targets such as in Europe, Syria, Iraq, Africa and other countries.
Non-profit agencies should work together in seeking funding that supports preventive effort.
Partner with national experts who can collect data to build the evidence base. Make use of data to demonstrate the need for increased funding for prevention programs.
Political parties to focus on the issue “child abuse” and keep it on the political agenda. WHO’s and International Society for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) Campaign on preventing child maltreatment.
Joaquima Alemany Roca has presented her book “Women and Liberalism” during the 20th anniversary of INLW, which was celebrated on the18th of May 2017 in Andorra.
Joaquima is Past President of INLW, but was involved as a lawyer and mediator, councilor of the Barcelona City Council, Member of the Spanish and the Catalan Parliament and many other organizations concerning women’s freedom and democracy. She has written several works on Women’s rights and has participated in relevant international conferences. She was one of the group of lawyers who participated in the drafting of the Penal Code Law.
In her new book “Women and Liberalism” she describes and identifies the liberal values and principles that were born in Britain. This book enlightens us about the struggle for women’s equality going back for centuries.
Historical or Classical Liberalism has helped to prepare the ideological foundations of Western Democracies of today. The Liberal values and principles have led to new ways of doing politics, away from the totalitarian and dictatorial processes.
Juli Minoves/ Margaret de Vos/ Joaquima Alemany
President LI/ President INLW
We congratulate Joaquima on the presentation of her book.
Andorra, 17 May 2017
INLW Board held a meeting with the members that were present for the 70th Congress of LIberal International. Mireia Huerta, Secretary, Silvia Flury member of INLW, Margaret de Vos van Steenwijk, President, Khadija El Morabit, vice-president Mena region, Joaquima Alemany, past president, Maysing Yang, vice-president Asia, Lysbeth van Valkenburg, Treasurer and Ruth Richardson, who was going to be appointed as a member of the Board the next day during the General Meeting.
During the board meeting the New Manifesto and our resolutions were discussed.
Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, Patron of INLW
Maysing Yang, vice-president Asia
During our General Meeting, many members were present by the presentation of the book about Women and Liberalism of our past president Joaquima Alemany Roca.
Khadija El/ Ruth / Maysing / Lysbeth / Juli / Margaret / Hakima El / Annemie/ Joaquima/ Mireia Morabit/ Richardson /Yang/ v.Valkenburg/ Minoves/dVos vSteenwijk/Haité/Neyts/Alemany/Huerta Sala