PES Women President Zita Gurmai reflects on current state of Women's issues in Korcula School


Korcula CEE gender school - group photo 2015

PES Women President, Zita Gurmai addressed the Korcula School 2015 in an introductory statement on August 29th. In her speech, Ms Gurmai highlighted the importance of continued emancipation and genuine efforts in order to empower women and achieve greater gender equality.

In her speech the politician urged all countries that have not yet ratified the Istanbul Convention to take action in order to put an end to violence against women and implement the appropriate measures putting pressure on states that are lagging behind. Gurmai warned of a “terrible conservative backlash” that is hindering the work of those who spare no effort in trying to improve women’s issues, bringing Viktor Orban’s conservative-nationalist government and its medieval approach over gender equality as a negative example. The current Hungarian government is offsetting all the positive change the country has achieved since the fall of the Iron Curtain, even now building a new wall along the southern border to stop the influx of war refugees, predominantly from war-ridden Syria and Afghanistan.

The PES Women president is convinced that progressive younger generations grow, they will deliver the desired change as “they perceive perfect gender equality the key to the modernity of our society, and the recovery of our broken economies.” However, some promising results could already been seen. There is an unprecedented number of women in the Turkish parliament, half of the contestants for UK Labour leadership are women, and the composition of the new Greek parliament is expected to reflect efforts for greater gender equality.

The direction is good, times are changing, “women who refuse to be patronized are transforming politics already. It is our time.” – said Ms Gurmai.