We urge all of you to vote in this year’s European Parliamentary elections, as they will have significant influence on the future of women’s human rights in the EU.
The EU Parliamentary elections will take place from 23rd – 26th of May 2019 and there was never a better time to vote, as the EU faces many challenges. A key issue is the rise of right-wing political parties (which many of you are already experiencing in your countries), that are promoting anti-democratic, anti-feminist agendas, threatening the very core of democracy including human rights and gender equality principles.
These destructive developments have led to an increasing backlash against human rights and key legal measures protecting women’s human rights such as the Istanbul Convention, and threaten the survival of women’s specialist support services which save hundreds of thousands of women’s lives in Europe every year. In the upcoming elections, right-wing and anti-EU parties are looking to increase their influence by gaining seats in the EU Parliament. Should they achieve this aim, they will not only have significant influence on shaping future EU policies, but also national policies. Here is a link of the EU’s impact on each of its members: https://what-europe-does-for-me.eu/en/portal
It is time to reclaim the human rights narrative and continue our fight for the feminist, democratic and human rights based values we believe in, values that are being increasingly hijacked by right-wing movements/parties. By voting and promoting politicians in the European Parliament representing these values, we contribute to a more just and democratic future for all women (and other population groups) in Europe.
The WAVE Board and the WAVE Head-Office strongly encourage all WAVE members to vote in these EU Parliamentary elections and to actively encourage as many other women as possible to vote. Empirical studies have demonstrated that compared to most other political parties, populist radical right-wing parties draw more votes from men than from women.
You can use the following channels to promote participation in this election: through the WAVE members, your social media accounts (e.g. Facebook, Instagram), but also by engaging your friends, families, and acquaintances. EVERY VOTE COUNTS and is an important step towards protecting human rights, the right to live free from violence and democracy in Europe!
Messages such as the following can be shared on social media:
Does your EP candidate care about your rights? Ensure they do by going to vote in May for the #EuropeWeWant! MEPs not only shape new legislation, but also scrutinise other EU institutions. Voting means having a say in the policies that shape your daily life. #EP2019 #FutureofEurope
Lastly, we would encourage you all to join the EU non-partisan campaign: “This time I’m voting” (https://www.thistimeimvoting.eu/) or any other lobbying activities you might find useful!
Thank you for taking the time to read this letter and now let’s take the political future of Europe into our hands!
The WAVE Board & WAVE Head-Office