Rut Einarsdóttir, framkvæmdastýra Kvenréttindafélags Íslands, sótti Warsaw Human Dimension Conference 2022, árlega ráðstefnu ÖSE – Öryggis- og samvinnustofnunar Evrópu um mannréttindi og lýðræði. Á ráðstefnunni sýndi hún samstöðu með nemendum menntaskóla og þolendum með rauðum varalit, eins og skipuleggjendur mótmæla við MH höfðu kallað eftir.
Á ráðstefnunni las hún upp eftirfarandi yfirlýsingu fyrir hönd félagsins:
7. október 2022
Distinguished Representatives of the OSCE States and conference participants,
I represent the Icelandic Women’s Rights Association and I present this statement to to highlight three issues that are pressing for gender equality in Europe; that is, the urgent need for civil society funding and the ongoing violence against women.
I want to begin by declaring that it is absolutely unacceptable that women in OSCE states are being paid less for their work than men. Globally, women are receiving 20% lower salaries than their male counterparts, while also doing the majority of household work. This is not a matter of normalisation of practises, but lack of political will. I urge the member states present here today to take matters in their hands and implement policies that prevent these discrepancies.
I’m also here today to emphasise that the ongoing violence against women both in Iceland and across the OSCE states is absolutely intolerable. Violence against women and girls is a human rights violation and should be treated as such. We, as a region, have both the resources and legislation available to combat gender-based and sexual violence. However, these tools are not being utilized effectively.
Violence against women is being exacerbated by the Russian aggression and war in Ukraine, where women have been forced to leave their homes, with too many ending up in situations of human trafficking, and even a huge increase in the search for Ukrainian women on popular porn sites.
For decades, civil society and women’s rights organisations have been underfunded in Europe, and many are struggling to keep up with the highly important work that they are doing. For decades we have been vocal about these issues without seeing adequate funding being allocated to civil society. As a result, and with ever rising populism in Europe, we are now seeing the backlash more vividly than ever, where women’s rights are being trampled on both in Europe and globally.
We urge the governments of the OSCE states to take these matters seriously and actively work towards ending all violence against women in any form, whether it’s in the workplace, schools, home life or situations of trafficking, and to adequately fund preventive measures, support and counselling.
We urge the governments of the OSCE states to provide adequate financing and support to organizations working on gender equality and women‘s rights. Give civil society the tools they need to secure our democracy and human rights.