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Monday, March 27, 2023

Equal rights: Spain announces quotas for women in politics and business

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Spain’s ruling Socialists want women to hold influential posts on an equal footing with men across the board. It is not clear whether the coalition partner will support them in this.

Spain’s left-wing head of government, Pedro Sánchez, has announced a law on equality for women when filling influential posts in politics and administration, as well as in associations and larger companies. “If women make up half of society, then they also have half of the political and economic power,” Sanchez said during a meeting of his party in Madrid.

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The draft law should be passed in the cabinet next Tuesday. Some of the plans provide for transitional periods of several years and changes in the law.

In the future, the government and parliament should be made up of equal numbers of women and men. Women already make up 60 percent of the current government, but far less than 50 percent in the two chambers of parliament in Madrid. For many other areas of important posts in society, it is envisaged that each of the two sexes will hold at least 40 percent of the posts.

Dispute with coalition partner about sexual criminal law

The announcement comes shortly at the start of an election year in Spain. Local and regional elections are coming up this year, as well as parliamentary elections at the end of the year. At the beginning of the election year, the coalition government of Sánchez’s socialist party PSOE and the left-wing party Unidas Podemos are in trouble over a dispute over sex crimes. The “Only yes means yes” law passed last year, which was supposed to make it easier to convict sex offenders and better protect women, has led to more than 721 sentence reductions and 74 early releases of sex offenders in the past few months, contrary to the intentions of the legislature .

PSOE and Unidas Podemos have not yet been able to agree on how the law should be corrected. It was therefore not ruled out that the PSOE could push the law through parliament with the votes of the conservative opposition against its own coalition partner. This could happen on March 9th, one day after International Women’s Day.

Source: Stern

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