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de Brún - Inequality needs tackled head on

13 March, 2007

"Inequality between men and women is as real as ever and must be tackled head-on by all in power" according to Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún.

Ms de Brún comments come as the European Parliament debate a report on the "Roadmap for equality between men and women" drawn up by the European Commission. The report on the European Commission's proposals says the right of equal pay for men and women must be properly enforced. Across the 27 states of the EU women earn on average 15% less than men for doing the same tasks. The Sartori report would also like to see greater paternity leave encouraged and expanded so that it is not just women who stay at home when couples have children.
Research has shown that in the 20-49 age group, employment rates fall by 15% among women if they have a child and rise by 6% in men.

Speaking today from Strasbourg, Ms de Brún said:

“We must place the question of inequality between the sexes in a wider context seeing it as ultimately a question of equal rights for all in Europe. Equality between men and women is not something that should be added on as an afterthought. It should be central to every EU and national programme."

"The launch of practical pilot projects analysing women’s access to EU programmes, the effectiveness of specific reserves for women or projects proposed by women, and the impact on the general EU budget on gender equality is a necessity.

"I also welcome the emphasis given to the needs of migrant women in this report and the clear unambiguous statement that equal pay for equal work is still not a reality." ENDS

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