4,367 of 5,000 signatures

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Commission, European Council , European Parliament

This petition is run by Alexandra Geese, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA

Petition text

We urge the European Commission and the European Council to make sure that at least half of the volume of the Recovery and Resilience Instrument is spent on women’s jobs and the advancement of women’s rights as well as equality between women and men. It is the European institutions’ task to ensure the implementation of Art. 23 of the European Charta of Fundamental Rights: “Equality between women and men must be ensured in all areas, including employment, work and pay”.  We ask them to act in line with the European Commission Gender Equality Strategy adopted in March 2020.
We call for: 

  • Gender impact assessments and gender budgeting for all funds spent in the framework of the Recovery and Resilience Instrument 
  • Investment in the care economy, developing resilient childcare services and schools that allow all parents to maintain paid jobs and a healthy life balance. 
  • Development of care services from a life-cycle perspective: a Care Deal for Europe and a European project for gender-disaggregated statistics of unpaid and paid work as a basis for a new calculation of GDP 
  • Obligations for companies receiving state aid or subsidies from the Recovery and Resilience Instrument to document that these funds will equally benefit employees of all genders; and especially those that have a low share of female employees and managers to hire and promote women respecting minimum quotas at management level
  •  A special fund dedicated to female-led businesses

Why is this important?

The Coronavirus crisis has hit all Europeans hard. But its economic impact is hitting women harder than men. While at the beginning of the crisis women’s work in hospitals, childcare and supermarkets was appreciated with applause on the balconies and public declarations, they are still dramatically underpaid.  Women are now losing their jobs at a much faster rate than men. Many of them work in “client-facing sectors” - tourism, events, hotels, restaurants, retail trade, different forms of therapy and many others which have been particularly affected by the crisis.
Women carry out the bulk of the additional unpaid work arising from closed schools and childcare facilities, sick family members and closed canteens. In Germany, it was calculated (1) that parents spend three hours a day homeschooling their children. In 82% of the cases “parents” meant mothers. Due to this extra amount of extra work in the home, women hardly have time to participate in the public debate anymore. An article published in the journal “Nature” (2) and some early academic studies (3) during the COVID lockdown showed that during the Corona crisis female academics submitted only half of the research papers  to scientific journals compared to the previous period in 2019. Male colleagues submitted more compared to the same period in 2019. Women have less time than ever to invest in their careers  - while rising unemployment leaves companies ample choice in hiring among men. This will make women’s advancement to the higher echelons of decision-making even more difficult. 
The Coronavirus crisis is turning into an enormous crisis for women’s income, life-long earnings, pensions, overall participation and power in society. Now is the time to turn this moment into an opportunity for the advancement of gender equality.
The European Commission and the European Council are developing a 500 billion  euro Recovery and Resilience Instrument. We support the Franco-German initiative for the planned EU reconstruction fund and wish it broad approval. This investment plan to relaunch and modernize the economy, with a priority on the digital and green transition, will shape Europe’s future by combating climate change and ushering in the green and digital transformation. This is an an absolute priority which we share, but there is on caveat: the digital and the energy sector are known to be male-dominated. Without additional measures, this economic stimulus instrument will not offer jobs for the women who are losing them - but for men. This could could turn into a redistribution programme of jobs and income being transferred from women to men. And thereby an instrument which will increase the impoverishment of women, funded by European taxpayers - half of whom are women. This is an example of unintended consequences which arise when the gender equality perspective is not involved applied at the onset of budgetary and recovery stimulus plans. 
Support us in our fight for a gender-equal Europe!
First signatories

  • Prof. Dr. Jutta Allmendinger, President of the Social Science Research Center Berlin
  • Prof. Dr. Rita Süssmuth, former President of the Bundestag
  • Gwendoline Lefebvre, President, European Women’s Lobby
  • Dr Costanza Hermanin, Professor at the College of Europe, Vice-secretary of +Europa
  • Laura Boldrini, Member of Italian Parliament, former President of the Italien Parliament (Camera dei Deputati)
  • Prof. Dr. Maria Wersig, President of the German Association of Women Laywers  e.V.
  • Francis Fitzerald, Member of the European Parliament, EPP
  • Sven Giegold, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Valeria Fedele, Member of the Italian Parliament
  • Mariolina Coppola, President of the Soroptimist International of Italy
  • Margarete Stokowski, Author
  • Sonja Lehnert, Social Media Manager, Blogger, Activist of #CoronaElternRechnenab
  • Daniela Colombo, Former President of AIDOS, Women for development
  • Valentina Parenti, Co-founder Gamma Donna
  • Kübra Gümüşay, Author, Speaker and Activist
  • Tijen Onaran, founder of Global Digital Women
  • Almut Schnerring, Initiator of the Equal Care Day
  • Luana Marmo, CEO and founder Design Digest
  • Monica Martinelli, Editorial director, Settenove
  • Teresa Bücker, Journalist
  • Elena Grandi, Co-portavoce di Europa Verde
  • Alexandra Geese, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Darya Majidi, Manager, Singularity University Faculty Member
  • Francesca Faedi, National Institute of Astrophysics
  • Ana Sofia Fernandes, President of the Portuguese Platform for Women's Rights
  • Franziska Brantner, Member of the German Bundestag, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen
  • Evelyn Regner, Member of the European Parliament, S&D
  • Monica B. M. Pontiroli, National Program Manager Prioritalia
  • Valentina Dolciotti, Founder&Editorial Director DiverCity magazine
  • Terry Reintke, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Monika Vana, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Stefania Spanò, Author, Anarkikka, L'Espresso
  • Maria Squarcione, Director of the University Medical Library La Sapienza Rome
  • Dr. Laura Sophie Dornheim, Digital Strategist
  • Daniela Poggio, Manager, Communicator, Inspirer of #Datecivoce
  • Marzia Camarda, Cultural Entrepreneur
  • Prof. Dr. Aysel Yollu-Tok, Deputy Director of the Harriet Taylor Mill Institute for Economics and Gender Studies at the HWR Berlin
  • Marina Weisband, Author, Psychologist and former Politician
  • Dr. Elisabeth Klatzer, Economist, Researcher, Activist
  • Katja Dörner, Member of the German Bundestag, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen
  • Francesca Parviero, Digital learning experience designer
  • Emanuela Giraldi, Founder of Pop Ai (Popular artificial intelligence)
  • Robert Franken, Digital & Diversity Activist, Ambassador HeForShe Germany, Founder Male Feminists Europe
  • Fikri Anil Altintas, Author, Ambassador HeForShe Germany
  • Emma Amiconi, President, Fondazione per la Cittadinanza Attiva
  • Giovanna Badalassi, Economist, Ladynomics
  • Kristina Lunz, Founder and Director of the Centre for Feminist Foreign Policy
  • Laura Gehlhaar, Author, Consultant and Speaker
  • Vincent Immanuel Herr, Activist, Co-initiator of DiscoverEU and HeForShe Ambassador Germany
  • Martin Speer, Economist, Co-Initiator of DiscoverEU, HeForShe Ambassador Germany
  • Petra de Sutter, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Giulia Varone, Entrepreneur
  • Gabriella Guido, Communication Specialist, AMREF Italia
  • Ulle Schauws, Member of the German Bundestag, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen
  • Mona Neubaur, Regional Chairwoman of Bündnis 90/Die Grünen NRW
  • Prof. Dr. Jakob Kapeller, Professor of Socioeconomics with focus on Plural Economics
  • Prof. Dr. Miriam Rehm, Assistant Professor of Socioeconomics with focus on Empirical Inequality Research
  • Marion Boeker, Director, Counselling for Human Rights & Gender
  • Dr. Lea Elsässer, Research Assistant at the Institute for Socio-Economics, University of Duisburg-Essen
  • Dr. Alyssa Schneebaum, Deputy Director of the Institute for Heterodox Economics, Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration
  • Fikri Anil Altintas, Journalist, HeforShe activist
  • Rasmus Andresen, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield, Member of the European Parliament, Greens/EFA
  • Dr. Joy Alemazung, Engagement Global

(1) Studie zum Unterricht zuhause "Homeschooling" belastet die Familien 
(2) The pandemic and the female academic
(3) Who is doing new research in the time of Covid-19? 

Next step - spread the word

You're signing this as Not you? Click here