Members of the Arab women parliamentarians network for equality (pioneers) meet to finalize plans and prepare for a regional forum


Cairo, 30 July 2015. Members of the Arab Women Parliamentarians Network for Equality (Pioneers) met from 29-30 July 2015 to discuss the general work plan and the plans of sub-committees. The meeting included agreement to prepare for a regional forum and a publicity campaign towards the end of this year to promote and spread awareness of the network. Members also discussed organizing an annual event to celebrate the Arab women parliamentarians. 

Through present and former Arab women parliamentarians, the network seeks to formulate policies that respect gender equality in the Arab States region with the aim of bridging the gender gap in Arab states by 2030.

According to Dr Rula Alhroob, member of the Jordanian House of Representatives and President of the Arab Women Parliamentarians Network for Equality “Pioneers”, “We now aim to broaden the membership of the network and build strategic alliances with active regional and international entities. Under our slogan “We meet to advance” we have met this time to discuss and affirm the committees’ action plans, including those of the Political, Media, Legal and Social Committee, Monitoring and Research.”

The members also discussed a communication and business development strategy for the network and preparations for a regional forum in Cairo in December 2015 that will discuss the challenges faced in raising the share of female representation in the elected houses. There was also an exchange of ideas about the organization of an annual event to celebrate the Arab women parliamentarians and to honour the leading role models.

About the Arab Women Parliamentarians Network for Equality “Pioneers”

The Arab Women Parliamentarians Network for Equality “Pioneers” is a parliamentary network concerned to defend the achievement of gender equality and the equal access to opportunities. The network aims to unite the efforts of present and former parliamentarians in the Arab States region to raise the share of female representation in decision-making positions in order to achieve gender parity by 2030. Political participation is a priority for the work of the network through changing the legislation regulating the political participation, in particular the election laws for the houses of parliament, municipal councils and local government, and the laws for political parties. The network operates as an influence group on government policies to adopt strategic agendas and plans supporting women and encourage transformation towards gender-sensitive budgets. It also seeks to activate funds and programmes dedicated to the empowerment of women economically, politically and socially. The network is supported by the Regional Programme for the Political and Economic Empowerment of Women in the Southern Mediterranean Region, “Spring Forward for Women”, financed by the European Union and the UN Women.

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About Spring Forward for Women Programme

The Regional Programme for the Economic and Political Empowerment of Women in the Southern Mediterranean Region (“Spring Forward for Women”) provides a mechanism to advance the economic and political empowerment of women in the Southern Mediterranean region. The programme (2012-2016) supports women across the region, focusing on priority countries undergoing unrest, transition and reform, such as such as Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Palestine and Tunisia, to have greater influence in shaping the future of their countries while protecting their previous gains. It connects stakeholders to ensure that marginalised women in these countries receive capacity building, advocacy, information and partnerships that address the barriers that have impeded their access and engagement in economic and public lives.   The programme is financed through a contribution of €7 million from the European Neighbourhood Partnership Instrument (ENPI) and of €1.2 million from the UN Women core budget.

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