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Posts Tagged ‘Eva Joly’

Poll: Who would you vote for in the first round?

In Politics, Poll on April 17, 2012 at 8:36 am

This is a quick poll for visitors to my site just for fun! Please vote based on your personal views, not who you predict will win.

If you’re not sure, take a moment to google their names, or look at their wikipedia pages (not that wikipedia is entirely reliable!).

Just like the real polls, this one is now closed! Thanks to everyone who voted.

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Sarkozy finally speaks up on policies affecting women

In Politics on April 7, 2012 at 6:49 pm

Image from Reuters

Nicolas Sarkozy, so far in his presidential campaign, has failed to attend any women’s rights forums or debates, despite having invites to two well-respected events. It is speculated that Sarkozy may make a late surge in the polls, and given what little attention he has given to women’s issues, it is unlikely that French feminist groups will be pleased by this.

Last month Sarkozy declined the invitation to be present at a question and answer evening organized by Féministes en Mouvement – a direct snub of feminist groups. Sarkozy’s rivals Jean-Luc Mélenchon (Front de gauche), Eva Joly (EELV) François Hollande (PS), and Philippe Poutou (NPA) did attend however and were questioned individually on issues.  Mélenchon was the only candidate to criticize the current President on his policies. He accused Sarkozy of “being against [Muslim] prayers in the street, but allowing Catholics to pray in front abortion clinics.” (d’être contre les prières [musulmanes] dans la rue, mais laisse les catholiques prier devant les centres d’IVG ). Mélenchon added that he believes there needs to be an attack on the ideology of the far right, which Sarkozy partly represents.

More recently, Sarkozy missed the forum organized by Elle magazine this week because protesters were blocking the entrance at a prestigious Paris Science-Po university where the debate was being held. However, Nathalie Arthaud, François Bayrou, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, François Hollande, Eva Joly and Marine Le Pen did manage to make it inside for the debate. Up to this point, Sarkozy had not made any pledges directly relating to problems affecting women.

On the 5th of April, however, Sarkozy did finally unveil some plans for creating 200,000 more places in childcare. On his website it says that these places are “in order to give parents a free choice to either work or stay at home and raise their children” (pour accorder aux parents un libre choix : celui de travailler ou de rester à la maison pour élever leurs enfants).

This is such a small measure which is unlikely to appease feminists who are already unhappy with the present government.

For more information, read the égalité-infos.fr article here, the slate.fr article here and all about Sarkozy’s policies here.

Influential French Women: Eva Joly

In Biography, Politics on December 19, 2011 at 8:58 pm

I have already discussed on this blog why Eva Joly is the most women’s-rights-friendly candidate on the ballot for the French 2012 presidential elections. So, let me present you with a short bio of the woman who could become France’s president in 2012.

Short Biography

Joly was born in Oslo, Norway in 1948 with dual French-Norwegian nationality. Joly moved to Paris when she was 20 to work as an au pair. She then went on to marry the son of the Joly family who employed her. Joly worked to support her husband through medical school, but eventually studied herself and became a magistrate aged 38.

Joly is best known for her 8 year investigation into corruption in the well-known multinational oil company Elf in the 1990s. She received death threats and continued her investigation despite the risks to her safety.

Today Joly is the Presidential candidate for the Europe, écologie et les verts (l’EELV). In her election campaign Joly presents a ‘green’ economy as the “the only way to get out of the [financial] crisis” (seul chemin pour sortir de la crise”.)

Media Coverage of Joly

Unsurprisingly, the left-wing press widely report developments in Joly’s presidential campaign and the green cause. In the wider press, however, Joly is not so well received. For example in the more right-wing press such as Le Figaro, her dual nationality is a point of contention. The question is always if Joly is French enough to be running for president. In an article from July this year Joly states, “I am French by choice and conviction” (Je suis française par choix et par conviction). Her accent has also raised questions of the legitimacy of her presidential candidacy. Joly reacted to this in a video which celebrates the diversity of the French accent and the proud patriotic reasons why immigrants choose to live in France.

Why should you know about her?

She best represents the feminist interest in the French Presidential elections and she is an accomplished magistrate who has fought for her beliefs throughout her career. Furthermore, Joly could not only be the next President, but the first female President in French history.

For more information see the video for yourself here (very much worth a watch if you understand French), Joly’s official biography here (French) and a recent Guardian interview here

 

Eva Joly’s Commitment to Pay Equality

In Politics on December 16, 2011 at 5:03 pm

Eva Joly: French Presidential Candidate 2012. Image from http://evajoly2012.fr/

In a recent interview with Libération, founder of the feminist movement Osez le Féminisme (which roughly translates as Dare to be Feminist), Caroline de Haas commented on the role she hopes feminist movements will play in the upcoming 2012 presidential elections; “The priority is to make the equality of men and women a political talking-point, to obtain strong commitments and promises.”(La priorité est de faire de l’égalité entre les hommes et les femmes un sujet politique, de recueillir des engagements forts, des promesses..). Attempting to get feminist issues into the main-stream agenda of either the right or left-wing is not an easy task. So, is anyone listening?

So far there are only 2 women on the 7 person ballot for the 2012 presidential elections: Marine le Pen for the far right Front National and Eva Joly for the leftist Europe, Ecologie, Les Verts (The Greens). Of the two candidates Joly appears to be the woman whose rhetoric comes closest to that of French feminist movements. In November, Joly published a news article on her website entitled: “From Novotel to the Senat, Eva Joly defends equality between men and women” (Du Novotel au Sénat, Eva Joly défend l’égalité entre les femmes et les hommes). The article sees photos of Joly supporting striking Paris hotel workers as they demanded better pay and more secure working hours.The article also notes that Joly’s campaign recognises women as being more likely to be on temporary contracts or in more unstable employment.

Recently, Joly signed Le pacte pour l’égalité (The pact for equality) which includes aims to make pay equal between genders within 5 years, reform maternity leave and increase paternity leave, and make it illegal to have employment contracts of less than 16 hours a week. The pact was written in conjunction with Osez le féminisme as part of the organization Laboratoire de l’égalitéspecifically in order to pin down presidential candidates on equality issues. This is exactly the kind of “strong commitment” Haas was looking for. This is not surprising because, after all, her organization helped to design it.

Joly seems to be politically alone with her stance on pay equality. The only other mention of job insecurity is by the left-wing Front de Gauche party who broach the issue by presenting job insecurity as a gender neutral problem. This approach does not actively recognize the percentage of women in precarious employment, nor does it really propose measures to tackle the issue of pay inequality in France.

It seems that Joly is the only candidate really representing women’s concerns and addressing the issues feminist movements really care about. But, of course, only time and the ballot box will tell if Joly will keep her promises to women.

More to come on Joly and the presidential campaigns for 2012. For more information see Joly’s website: http://evajoly2012.fr/ (French) and an interview with Joly done in February 2011 by the Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/feb/04/eva-joly-interview