The feminist future we deserve

February 19, 2024

Protest for "only yes means yes"

By Carmen Blanco Grigelmo

In mid January we made history: the EU agreed on its first law on violence against women. This means that, once approved, all European member states will have to do more to protect the rights of women and girls. [1]

There will be crisis centers for survivors, better accessible national telephone helpline numbers, and shelters for victims of domestic violence. Female genital mutilation, forced marriage, and some forms of online violence will also be established as crimes. [2]

This wouldn't have been possible without you, the support of this community. Thanks to this community and the work of our partners, The European Women’s Lobby, we've shown that people power is unstoppable. Here are some of the things this community helped make happen:

  • More than 140,000 WeMove Europe members signed the petition to "Make Europe a safe place for all women and girls". [3]
  • We sent hundreds of emails and tweets to the Ministries of Justice of the key governments for this negotiation.
  • We delivered your signatures to the European Commission, The Council and the Parliament and organised powerful protests in Brussels, Berlin, and Paris.
  • We made the issue go viral in Spain with the help of an influential illustrator. Her comic explaining the law reached almost 80,000 people! [4]
  • Our campaign made headlines in important international newspapers such as El País, Euractiv, and The Washington Post. [5]

While this is a big step forward, European leaders missed an opportunity for bolder changes. They failed to agree on a definition of rape based on consent where ONLY YES MEANS YES, protection for undocumented women, measures against sexual harassment at work, and the prohibition of forced sterilization of women and girls with disabilities. [6]

But this is just the beginning of our fight!

We don’t want our struggle for justice to end here, and that’s why we still need your support to improve the law.

We look forward to continuing to count on you in our next steps to move towards the fair, feminist and green Europe we deserve.

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