Brussels, 23 September – Today, 14 members of the European Coalition to end violence against women and girls, have written an open letter to the EU decision-makers regarding the MFF 2021-2027 and the EU’s recovery plans Next Generation EU (NGEU) 2021-2024. Together, we are urging EU decision-makers to visibly commit to ensuring increased and adequate EU funds are dedicated to gender equality and the fight to end violence against women and girls.
We are pleased about the recent decision by the European Commission to reverse the 20% cuts of the budget to the Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values Programme, which is now proposed at €638 million (current prices). These commitments were further welcomed by the European Council following the July 2020 Special Meeting, who supported the Commission’s 2018 proposed amount of €841 million (2018 prices) to the Justice, Rights and Values Fund.
In light of the European Parliament’s vote to withhold its consent for the MFF on 23 July 2020, we urge EU decision-makers to swiftly come to an ambitious agreement and meet the Parliament’s demands for targeted increases to flagship programmes, including tripling the amount allocated to the Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values programme to €1.83 billion (current prices).
COVID-19 has worsened persistent forms of gender inequalities and increased discrimination against women, particularly through increased cases of violence against women and disruptions to accessing essential sexual and reproductive health services.(1) We are now turning to EU decision-makers to ensure the EU’s long-term budget and recovery plans match their political commitments to promoting and protecting the rule of law and the fundamental rights of women and girls across the EU, ensuring a life free from all forms of violence.
Our recommendations include:
- Increasing funds to advancing gender equality and eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls, which has been made worse during the COVID-19 crisis.
- Increasing investments to the European Institute of Gender Equality to sustain their work on advancing these objectives.
- Applying gender mainstreaming and a gender budgeting lens across all funding areas of Next Generation EU and the MFF.
Read our letter and demands here!
(1) European Women’s Lobby policy brief: “Women must not pay the price for COVID-19! Putting equality between women and men at the heart of the response to COVID-19 across Europe”;
WAVE Policy Statement on COVID-19 and Violence against Women and Girls: https://www.wave-network.org/2020/05/12/press-release-wave-policy-statement-on-covid-19-and-violence-against-women-and-girls/