Panel Debate: Campaigning for Equality and Women’s Rights
No matter where in Europe you look, citizens from Italy to Ireland, from Poland to Denmark are campaigning in their personal and professional capacity to ensure equal rights for all and to give a voice to underrepresented groups in our society. While the role of women in enhancing democracy in Europe is often overlooked, it is never too late to shine the light on their initiatives and to strengthen the capacity of civil society and female activism. For this, we invited five inspiring women to share their unique experiences in fighting for a cause and to illustrate the powerful impact of civic engagement and grassroots activism.
This panel debate took place in the context of this year’s edition of the Women of Europe Awards and ahead of the Award ceremony held in the evening on the same day. By bringing together female activists from different backgrounds, the event offered an opportunity to discuss the efforts of women in making their voice heard, empowering minority groups and effectively advocating for equal rights.
The initial kick-off remarks focused on the ‘Together for Yes’ campaign in the context of Ireland’s abortion referendum in May 2018, as a women-led grassroots campaign that created a blueprint for reproductive rights campaigners across Europe and beyond and for which thousands of volunteers were mobilised. The initial remarks where followed by a discussion among the panellists and audience on recipes for successful campaigning and ways for citizens, and in particular those under-represented in politics, to make their voice heard and to change politics.