Gender equality is one of the priorities of the European Commission under its president von der Leyen.
After the Commission revealed its new Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2025 back in March 2020, the European Parliament, during its Plenary session yesterday, voted 464 to 119 to approve a report that gives its opinion on the Strategy.
Sport was already mentioned in the Commission’s paper, stating:
“The renewed strategic framework for gender equality in sport will promote women’s and girls’ participation in sport and physical activity and gender balance in leadership positions within sport organisations.”
The report from the Parliament also mentions sport several times:
Recital Z. “whereas women and girls face a number of obstacles in the field of sports and are not only subject to violence, but also face discrimination in pay, prize money and working conditions, and are widely under-represented on the boards of sports organisations and media;”
Following advocacy efforts by the EOC EU Office, in coordination with the IOC, the positive role of sport in contributing to gender equality and women’s empowerment was also included in an Article, in addition to the gaps mentioned in the Recital above:
Article 102. “Calls on the Member States and the Commission to increase gender equality and women’s empowerment in sport at large, given the powerful and undeniable role sport can play in helping women and girls break down gender stereotypes, in building confidence and in strengthening their leadership skills; calls on the Member States and the Commission to provide effective platforms to promote female role models and leaders with international, national and local reach; calls on the Member States to promote and develop policies to combat the gender-based remuneration gap and disparities in prize monies, any kind of violence against women and girls in sports and to ensure more coverage of women in the sports media and in decision-making positions; calls on the Commission to include sport in the planned campaign against stereotypes;”
The adopted report will now be forwarded to the Council and the Commission for consideration.
Gender equality in Sport will also be high on EU agenda in the upcoming months with the first meetings of the High Level Group on Gender Equality in sport.