Statement on International Women's Day

I congratulate all Georgia on the International Women's Day, which is, first and foremost, related to protection of women's labour rights, women's participation in decision-making and fight for elimination of violence. Unfortunately, the themes that created the history of fight against inequality - March 8 - have not lost their urgency.

Protection of women's labour rights and prohibition of discrimination in labour relations are still significant challenges. In addition, inequality in the decision-making process is evident. On the one hand, wrong views in the public, and on the other hand, the lack of special measures, creates visible and invisible barriers in women's participation in political and public life.

Georgia needs more women in politics, more women's voices in decision-making, peace-building and development of democracy. We often hear arguments that women do not want to participate in the country's political life, which is not true. This argument can only sound convincing to a person, which have not seen women in Georgia - human rights defenders, leaders, those living in rural areas, active women who daily change the life of their community.

We need a quota system to overcome existing inequalities and to remove invisible barriers. In addition, it is particularly important to improve women's labour rights, the fight against violence and discrimination, as only through this way the idea of ​​equality will strengthen in practical life.
Of particular importance is achievement of gender equality at the local self-governmental level, which means empowerment of women in decision-making processes. As early as in 1917, Kato Mikeladze wrote: "Women, you are told: self-government should move to people". You should say that people are not only the men, that the self-government should really need to belong to people. Raise your fair demands! Protect your rights!" I share the words of Kato Mikeladze and urge local authorities to make integration of gender equality and women empowerment a matter of particular concern.

At the same time, once again I express my support for the introduction of the quota system and call on political parties, the authorities and the Parliament to support equality together. We need more women in politics.

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