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More gender equality in Parliamentary Assembly positions

Motion for a resolution | Doc. 12230 | 28 April 2010

Ms Doris STUMP, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Sonja ABLINGER, Austria, SOC ; Mr John AUSTIN, United Kingdom ; Ms Anna ČURDOVÁ, Czech Republic ; Mr Kirtcho DIMITROV, Bulgaria, EPP/CD ; Ms Lydie ERR, Luxembourg, SOC ; Mr Renato FARINA, Italy, EPP/CD ; Ms Mirjana FERIĆ-VAC, Croatia, SOC ; Ms Alena GAJDŮŠKOVÁ, Czech Republic, SOC ; Baroness Anita GALE, United Kingdom ; Ms Gisèle GAUTIER, France, EPP/CD ; Ms Carina HÄGG, Sweden ; Ms Francine JOHN-CALAME, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Birgen KELEŞ, Turkey, SOC ; Ms Elvira KOVÁCS, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Ms Athina KYRIAKIDOU, Cyprus, SOC ; Ms Hermine NAGHDALYAN, Armenia, ALDE ; Ms Carmen QUINTANILLA, Spain, EPP/CD ; Ms Luz Elena SANÍN, Spain, EPP/CD ; Ms Maria STAVROSITU, Romania, EPP/CD ; Ms Elke TINDEMANS, Belgium

Although the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe strongly defends equal rights and equal opportunities for women and men, its own practice of distributing positions does not lead to gender equality at all. Thus, for example, in January 2010, only one woman – but nine men – were elected to chair one of the ten Assembly Committees – despite the fact that, in accordance with Rule 44.1. of the Rules of Procedure, “the principle of gender equality” is to be taken into account during these elections.

Measures leading to more gender equality in the Assembly are thus clearly needed. For example, new rules could be introduced on the distribution of all Assembly positions in order to guarantee that either sex is represented with at least 40% at all levels. To be effective, these rules should be clear and mandatory, including for the political groups and national delegations involved in the process.