Feminism becomes a central topic in Spain’s election campaigns

Feminism has become one of the major issues in Spanish elections set for April 28.

Victoria Wystepek
Victoria Wystepek NewsMavens, Europe
Feminism becomes a central topic in Spain’s election campaigns - NewsMavens
Santiago Abascal, YouTube

Why this story matters:

Gender equality has remained in the national spotlight since International Women’s Day on March 8 when thousands of Spanish women went on strike from work and domestic responsibilities to protest the gender-based salary gap, violence against women, and inequality. Now, many political parties are adopting a feminist agenda into their campaigns. 

The gender pay inequality continues in Spanish society today. Female Spanish employees make 15.1% less than men, according to Eurostat. The Spanish Socialist Worker’s Party (PSOE) created a separate section in its program for a “feminist Spain” with plans to modify the penal code for equal opportunities law and anti-trafficking law. The Unidos Podemos coalition has even changed its name to Unidas Podemos, the feminine grammar form. 

Not all political parties are eager to adopt the feminist agenda. The far-right Vox party is working to undermine recognized women’s rights. Part of its plans are to challenge a women’s right to abortion, which is well-established in Spanish society. 

This year, the women’s vote has high importance in the general elections. Polls show that 60% of undecided voters in Spain are women, which gives them the power to be the deciding vote.

Details from the story:

  • Left-wing parties have been receptive to feminist agendas, while conservative parties have rejected what they consider to be “radical feminism.” 
  • Ángela Muñoz, a hotel waitress, says that women are protesting not only against wage inequality, but jobs that make women seem subservient to men. “There are women who are still scrubbing on their knees,” she said. 
  • The ruling Socialist Party is the most equal in Congress, with eleven female and six male ministers in the Cabinet.
  • Leader of the Vox party, Santiago Abascal, claims it is leading the fight against "supremacist feminism".
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