The MLSA subsidy program supports public orientated activities of non-governmental organisations that deal with equal opportunities for men and women: “Defending the rights of women in the Czech Republic” (2014).
The Open Society Fund Prague, Let’s Give (Wo)Man a Chance Programme and Norway Grants, Defending the Women's Rights in the Czech Republic (07/2014 - 04/2016).
In government advisory bodies:
The National Reform Programme 2014 and CWL, represented by Jane Smiggels Kavková met for discussion, on 23. 10. 2014 with representatives of the European Commission. Mission to the Czech Republic, led by Detlef Eckert, Director of the Europe 2020. Comments were transmitted orally.
CWL is actively involved in the working group of the Expert Commission on Pension Reform (OK), amongst whom participated deputy of CWL Radka Dudová, who acted and commented on the planned reform.
The Government Council for Sustainable Development requested the nomination of a member of the CWL on June 19, 2014, and Selma Muhic Dizdarevič was subsequently chosen.
CWL organised a seminar on "Changes in the new Civil Code" for members and cooperating NGOs on the new Civil Code, which took place Thursday, June 26, 2014.
Monitoring of the Implementation of Equal Opportunities Policies
CWL has sent open letters to the five leaders and to the members of the Government and published a press release: Opposition to the Bill on Regulation of Prostitution, see: http://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/302-7/otevreny-dopis-k-navrhu-zakona -o-regulation of prostitution /.
In the context of lobbying the CWL focused on prostitution and lobbied on both the personal meetings with politicians, as well as through e-mail correspondence, which was sent to all Members. In addition CWL promoted this topic and in the media (e.g. Jane SK’s performances in a debate with L. Manhart and journalist Daniela Drtinová on the show DVTV, see: http://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/307-7/co- with-prostitution-jana-Smiggels-Kavková-vs-Lukas-Manhart /). The result of these activities was a negative opinion of the Mandate and Petition Committee (who had submitted the negatively perceived draft law) and a decision on its withdrawal (and not reprocessing, as had been the original intention).
CWL was further involved in supporting Anna Šabatová on the position of the Ombudsman, as part of the Platform for Human Rights, of which is CWL founder and member: (http://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/261-7/otevreny-dopis-a-tz-platformy... ). This support has borne its fruit and A. Šabatová was elected Ombudsman.
CWL also supported the importance of the human rights agenda, both through happenings and various challenges and appeals, as well as through part of the aforementioned Platform for Human Rights: (http://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/256-7/tz- platform-for-human-rights / orhttp://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/306-7/ceska-zenska-lobby-proti-znev...)
CWL also supported the candidacy of Vera Jourova at the first ever Czech EU Commissioner: http://www.czlobby.cz/content/files/Dopis-eukom_VeraJourova_SIGNED.pdf
Involvement in International Activities
As part of international activities CWL President Jana Chržová and board member Jana S. Kavková attended Annual Conference / Assembly of the European Women's Lobby in Lisbon on 10 and 11 October 2014. The General Assembly EWL in Lisbon included strategic planning, elections to the bodies of EWL, performances project EWL Making Women's Social Entrepreneurship Visible in Europe, and the day before public events were held to report to the EWL Beijing + 20 summit. Jana S. K, also as a member of the board of the European Women's Lobby, participated in strategic planning with EIGE.
On 9 December 2014, the President of Czech Women's Lobby participated in a strategic meeting with EWL in Brussels to further unite steps for enforcing the abolitionist "policy" across the EU and to promote the Nordic model approach to prostitution in as many EU countries as possible. The meeting served both as the current briefing (development in some countries, specifically currently in Ireland), as well as a brainstorming session for outlining a plan for the next five years. For links to the Brussels site visit: http://www.womenlobby.org/get-involved/ewl-campaigns-actions/together-fo... (For a Europe free from prostitution)
Alternative comments on the National Reform Programme Member States in the EU 2020 were filed by CWL Commission officials (section 2020) on personal meetings and a report sent, which was drawn up on the current state (CWL CSR Czech Republic 2014).
CWL joined the international campaign Emergency Motion EWL, which worked on the theme of violence against women in armed conflicts and the Feminist Declaration for Post 2015 (gender, economic, social and environmental rights for sustainable development).
CWL was very active in its international cooperation with the European Women's Lobby.
CWL spread letters in support of European policies in the field of RP – to members of the Czech government and also sent a letter to the newly elected EU Commissioner Vera Jourova, as an expression support and offered cooperation.
Working Group for Obstetrics
The working group "System Change in Obstetrics" NGO representatives meets regularly every month. In the framework of working groups, teams were established that are systematically engaged in individual activities: lobbying, advocacy for legislative changes establishing standards of midwifery care, preparing media strategies, creating informational materials for parents and health professionals, and dealing with insurance companies.
June 6 CWL, in cooperation with the Nesehnutí and Union midwives, organised a workshop for normal births, which was devoted to the promotion of natural childbirth at home and a summary of practical experience of this practice in the US, as well as a subsequent lecture on births across cultures. Both events took place in Prague Cinema Perštýn. The accredited workshop on "Normal childbirth in the US" was led by two American midwife Mairi Rothman and Erin Fulham, who have a private practice and accompany the births.
12. 12. 2014 there was a press conference and happening for normal childbirth within the campaign "Normal Childbirth" (http://www.czlobby.cz/tiskove-zpravy/321-7/plavba-za-normalnim-porodnict...).
CWL also managed a transparent account whose funds were primarily to legal fees and other expenses related to strategic cases. (Transparent account number is 2400283520/2010).
Conference Women and Economy
The conference was held with the support of Friedrich Ebert Stiftung on 17 March. It focused on two main themes: the area of care (children, the elderly and other dependent persons) and the impact of the financial crisis on women. The main speakers were Barbara Stiegler and Christa Wichterich (author of Globalized Woman), and contributions were also made by Czech experts from academia and NGOs. The event attracted about 60 listeners. Discussions were lively and interesting.
A speech took place at the meeting of the Permanent Commission for Family and Equal Opportunities of the Chamber of Deputies
On 20 May, the CWL participated in meetings of the Permanent Commission for Family and RP. She was given the opportunity to present before the parliamentarian's activities and acquaint them with the main challenges that are currently being addressed by CWL. The key themes are:
- Institutional safeguarding of equal opportunities,
- Participation of women in decision-making positions,
- Equal opportunities in the labour market and the availability of care for preschoolers
- Women's reproductive rights and access for migrant women to public health insurance.
Since it was during the meeting of the Commission, there was plenty of room for discussion. The Executive Committee agreed with the President of the Permanent Commission H. Langšádlová to organise two seminars for MPs, on the topic of migrants, health insurance and reproductive rights.
The seminar on migrant access to the public health insurance system took place on 7 October 2011. In addition to MPs, the professional community also participated, especially the Interior Ministry, the Prague City Hall, teaching hospitals, nonprofit organizations and migrants themselves.
Seminar obstetrics were in the form of a public hearing, organised at the beginning of 2012.
Happening on Equality Day
Czech Women's Lobby joined the celebrations for the Day of Equality, which is celebrated on 17 June. Under the title "Do you have the same opportunity?", a parallel happening at Letná in Prague and Brno on Míru Square was organised. Both events were conceived as a fun race between men and women, who had to undergo various obstacles which symbolised the persistent inequalities between men and women. The competition involved running with shopping bags, facing sexual harassment, and the men also had to run with a pregnant belly or with a pram.
Two days before the celebration of equality CWL also held a press conference, which highlighted the critical areas where there is still inequalities between men and women.
Letters to Prime Minister Nečas
In August 2011, CWL wrote another open letter to Prime Minister Nečas regarding the non-functioning of the Government Council for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men. He replied at the beginning of October, and explained the malfunction of the Board of moving from the Government Office to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. In early January, the Prime Minister also replied to a letter from President of the European Women's Lobby regarding the absence of women in government: assuring her that he attaches great importance to equal opportunities.
Calls for Safe Birth
In connection to the trial against midwifery of Ivana Königsmarková and approval of the Health Care Act, which drastically reduces the activity of midwives and pushes them beyond the boundaries of legality, the Czech Women's Lobby launched a campaign to promote the rights of midwives.
• CWL initiated the call for safe childbirth, urging parliamentarians MEP and the public to prevent the adoption of this law, to ensure adequate legislative support to midwives for their work and allow women free choice of care during pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period, as it lays down the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms and the European Convention on Human Rights.
• CWL was in collaboration with other initiatives supported by public demonstration for the rights of midwives, which took place on 17 October. At the demonstration a petition was drafted, which was forwarded to the office of the Minister of Health.
• CWL subsequently launched a media campaign to support the initiative and to act against the adoption of the aforementioned Act. CWL members also performed in a number of programmes on radio and TV Events ČT 1 (17. 10. 2011), Traction lady (22. 10.) Aktuálně.cz, idnes.cz, Novinky.cz, Czech noviny.cz, Mediafax, Eurozprávy.cz, Deník referendum (18. 10.) Radio Wave (19/10). Other media appearances were settled by the end of the year and at the beginning of the next one.
• Also were initiated lobbying activities and CWL and other members of the working group obstetrics began actively addressing MPs and negotiate support for a discussion on the adoption of a new law regulating the complex obstetrics and reproductive rights, including the clear anchoring the activities of midwives.
• Call for the safe birth was also forwarded Boris Šťastný, Chairman of the Committee on Health of Deputies.
Promotion of reform of the Czech obstetrics
Czech Women's Lobby put pressure on the Ministry of Health, by establishing a working group whose aim was to work on the reform of the Czech obstetrics. This involved representatives of recipients of care and midwives, representatives of health insurance companies and the Ministry of Health. At the meeting the deputy of CWL presented a number of documents, however, unfortunately, after the unexpected departure of all doctors the fate of the working group is currently unclear. CWL therefore plans to evaluate further and potential strategy to focus more on the judicial route. We have set up a special transparent account in which we collect money to pay court costs for women who are willing to sue the Czech state and claim their rights in this way. The two lawsuits are currently pending before the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg and we expect results in the spring of 2013. March 27, we organised a seminar about the situation in the Czech obstetrics in the Chamber of Deputies, which featured doctors, deputy recipients of care, midwives, lawyer League of Human Rights and other related experts.
Monitoring the Impact of Legislation to Women, Open Letters and Consultations
During the year we monitor legislation, especially the implications of social reforms on women. We have sent a number of open letters to the Prime Minister and to individual ministers or EU commissioners, e.g. in the matter of subsidy policy in 2013, non-transparent distribution of money from the European Social Fund, a proposal by Commissioner Viviane Reding to introduce quotas for companies, prosecute Hungarian doctor and midwife Agnes Gereb etc. . We provided information about the situation in the Czech Republic in joint publications, the European Women's Lobby: on the impact of the crisis and the cuts to status of Women, on the National reform Programme of the Czech government, which will be part of the EU strategy by 2020.
Lobbying for Open Access to Public Health Insurance for Migrants
Along with other organisations we seek to open up access to public health insurance for foreigners living in the Czech Republic. CWL are going to meetings with politicians. The theme will also be addressed at the meeting of the Government Council for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men.
Membership in the Government Council for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men
The chair of CWL is an active member of the Government Council for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, which was restored at the beginning of 2012. CWL submitted suggestions on its agenda, including proposals for specific resolutions. These resolutions were then discussed by the government, albeit mostly with a negative response. Despite this "vanity", a large proportion of our complaints ended up being called. In sum, we believe that it makes sense to try to influence government policy. In addition to our own designs we also comment on draft laws and other relevant government documents.
International Day of Gender Equality
This year we held a 19.6 happening to mark the occasion of the International Day of gender equality, this time in the park at Charles Square. The event was once again a form of competition called "We have equal chances?" - in which athletes and racers had to undergo a course symbolising the disadvantage that women face.
Support for Pussy Riot
April 15, we held a demonstration in support of imprisoned activists Pussy Riot in front of the Russian Embassy. The event had great media coverage and the whole affair will continue watching. We also organized a demonstration alongside Amnesty International, and coordinated the actions.
The Working Group on Midwifery in the General Assembly European Women's Lobby
At this year's general meeting of the European Women's Lobby on May 12 in Budapest, we organised a thematic working group, so-called Issue Group "on the subject of midwifery in the countries of the former Eastern Bloc”. The outputs of this group will become part of the newly formed EWL policy paper on the sexual and reproductive rights of women. It is the first time that EWL has materially managed to incorporate the issue of violation of rights of mothers and midwives in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
The Internal Debate on Prostitution
We held an internal discussion on prostitution, which also hosted experts from the organisations involved in prostitution (Bliss without Risk, La Strada and Axes Street). The aim of the discussion was both to get more information on this complex issue, but also try to develop a common position CWL.
In this period Czech Women´s Lobby systematically lobbied for the adoption of anti-discrimination law, cooperated with the European Women's Lobby, on the basis of strategic meeting of women it developed a position paper on the financial crisis.
In May 2009, a coordinator of the Czech Women's Lobby, Kristyna Ciprová, attended summer school Feminist Critical Analysis: postsocialism, postcolonialism, postfeminism.
In March 2009, a chair of the Czech Women's Lobby, Alexandra Jachanová Doleželová, attended the 53rd session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women.
In January 2009, representatives of the Czech Women´s Lobby met the U.S. ambassador and the president of The Institute for Inclusive Security Swanee Hunt.
During October 2008 and June 2009 the Czech Women's Lobby conducted a project Promoting gender equality in the CZ Press.
In November 2008 the Czech Women's Lobby organized international conference: Gender Equality – A Neglected Priority (not only) During the EU Presidency?
2005 – 2008
In the years 2005 - 2007 CWL was taking part in the following principal activities. CWL supported the accession of the Czech Republic to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in collaboration with other NGOs – Amnesty International, Human Rights League, People in Need. CWL sought to include equal opportunities in project calls for MPSV, the Norwegian Embassy and NROS. It lobbied for the adoption of the so-called Anti-Discrimination Act in cooperation with the Centre for Ecological citizenship and legal services. CWL has become the place to comment on fundamental documents, such as "Government priorities and procedures in promoting RP for women and men" and others. Thanks to the supply of the minister for human rights and equal opportunities, members of networks became interested in strategic positions in government advisory bodies, such as the Government Council for Equal Opportunities, the Government Council for Human Rights and the Government Council for NGOs.
The network deputies were regularly hosted in the public media. The celebration for the International Women's Day was held in March 2007 after a press conference entitled "Yesterday, Today carnation lobbying", which aimed to introduce modern understanding of International Women's Day and criticise its persistent stereotyping in the Czech media. CWL also filed several complaints on sexist advertising to the Czech Advertisement Council.
CWL considers it important to strengthen individual member organisations through training. During the project, lectures were organised and conducted by the non-profit sector in collaboration with the Department of Civil Sector FHS UK, as well as a two-day seminar named "How to Lobby for Women's Rights", with the participation of lecturers from the EWL. Regular gender education was also organised by the electronic newsletter "Síťovka".
CWL supported many campaigns and self-initiated petitions, such as the action "Who Cares", aiming to ensure accessible and quality care services. This European campaign is based on the assumption that it is the women who take care of dependent family members and hence carry disastrous consequences of this care. The campaign "normal childbirth" and initiatives by Aperio, HAM, the Association of Mine and others, intended to open a discussion about normal childbirth and to conceive pregnancy and childbirth as a natural process one can undergo without complications in over 90% of cases. A relatively wide campaign called "Woman is Not a Commodity" took place during the football World Cup in Germany and was aimed at combating trafficking of women. In the summer of 2008, a campaign for the Day of Equal Opportunities was organised by Gender Studies. This awareness campaign also took place in several European countries. Promotional postcards to publicise CWL were produced in collaboration with the Information Centre of the European Parliament and, in particular, the Forum 50%.
How has this network since evolved? There was a gradual increase in the number of member organisations. They all completed basic documents – statutes and the rules of CWL.