On the occasion of the International Day of Peace – which is celebrated every year on 21 September – PACE President Liliane Maury Pasquier took part in a panel discussion in London on “Take a Stand: Say no to Sexism and Harassment”, organised in the framework of a Peace One Day event
The President underlined that Peace Day was an occasion for each one of us to take a clear and firm stand against violence, whatever form it might take – be it physical, sexual or psychological – and wherever it might occur, whether in our homes, in our schools, on our sports fields, online, or even in our own parliaments.
“On this important day, I have chosen to take a stand against violence and harassment of women in their workplace, particularly in parliaments,” she said. The results of a study published a year ago by PACE and the IPU revealed that sexism, harassment and violence against women are commonplace in parliaments across Europe. “In the wake of the #MeToo movement, our study has shown that in this area parliaments – like society in general – have nothing to be proud of. On the contrary, it has only confirmed a sad reality: that of #MPstoo. As a European citizen and as a parliamentarian, I cannot stay indifferent to this scourge, and have therefore decided to launch a new initiative to combat it: #NotInMyParliament”.
“If we denounce this situation, make others aware of it, and choose to speak up about it, no Council of Europe parliament can continue to claim that it is unaware of what is happening in its own corridors. Each and every one of us must therefore take action,” she added.
“The #NotInMyParliament initiative is perhaps just a small drop in the ocean, but to create a wave of change every single drop counts. I hope you will all support it - not only today, but every single day,” she concluded.