Czech parties with few female candidates may lose subsidies


25.07.2014 11:43

Prague - The political parties having less than 30 percent of women on their lists of candidates for the general and regional elections may get less money from the state per mandate gained, according to a draft amendment to the election law, of which daily Pravo writes today.


Hlasovací lístek s vyznačenými přeferenčními hlasy ve volbách do Poslanecké sněmovny Parlamentu České republiky na snímku z 25. října, volby - ilustrační foto. ČTK Štěrba Martin

The provision has been initiated by Human Rights Minister Jiri Dienstbier (Social Democrats, CSSD).

Pravo writes that the CSSD´s government coalition partner, the ANO movement of Andrej Babis, and the rightist opposition and Communists (KSCM) do not like the bill, that the Interior Ministry has now sent to ministries and other institutions for comments.

"The representation of women in Czech politics has long been low. The Czech Republic ranks 60th among 144 countries, together with Eritrea and Uzbekistan, in standings by the Interparliamentary Union," the report accompanying the bill says.

It says the representation of women in elected bodies in the country is below average.

The bill sets women´s positions on the lists of candidates. For instance, both genders should be represented in first two places.

The party that would fail to fulfil the criteria, would get 598,500 crowns per lawmaker´s mandate, compared with the usual 855,000 crowns. In regional bodies, the subsidy would be cut from 237,500 crowns to 166,250 crowns.

According to the report, women have constituted about one fifth of all 200 Chamber of Deputies lawmakers after the two past general elections (in 2010, 2013), while about 27 percent were included in the lists of candidates.

The report says women´s minimal quotas on the lists of candidates have been voluntarily applied by political parties in Scandinavian countries, in France they are embedded in the constitution, and in Belgium, Poland, Slovenia and Spain they are set by election legislation.

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