Wednesday, 26. November 2014
08. 03. 12. - 17:00
An appeal by Dorothea Schittenhelm of the People’s Party (ÖVP) to increase the number of female parliament members (MP) has received approval among government and opposition representatives.
Speaking on today’s (Thurs) International Women's Day (IWD), Schittenhelm said every other spot on all parties’ electoral lists should be occupied by female politicians. She said a law affecting general and provincial elections was needed to raise the number of female delegates. "Well-meant recommendations and suggestions did not help," the chairwoman of the ÖVP’s women’s department said. She underlined that various similar calls expressed in the past went unheeded. Setting up a law to enforce a change was the only way to substantially change the situation.
One in two members of the Greens’ parliamentary faction are women. The four other political parties represented in the parliament have significantly lower percentage rates. The situation is similar in Austria’s nine provincial parliaments which feature 448 delegates altogether.
The Greens said they were willed to form a bipartisan partnership for a law for more women in politics. SPÖ Women’s Minister Gabriele Heinisch-Hosek expressed support for Schittenhelm’s suggestion as well. Heinisch-Hosek said chances that her faction backed a partnership for a reform were high.
A two-third majority is needed to set up a law for a 50 per cent quota of women on electoral lists. It is unlikely that such a bylaw comes into affect anytime soon since the Freedom Party (FPÖ) – the strongest opposition faction – said it would not join an initiative for such a constitutional law. Heinisch-Hosek also made aware of the "blockade politics" of the ÖVP faction in the past concerning pro-female reforms.
The women’s minister referred to a controversial debate in parliament last year when male ÖVP members tried to keep their female colleagues from campaigning for a change of the national anthem’s lyrics. Former ÖVP Women’s Minister Maria Rauch-Kallat wanted to present her draft bill in what was her last parliamentary debate before she left politics.
Several ÖVP members deliberately ignored time limits on MPs’ speeches when they entered the podium to refer about a variety of issues from pig farming to the upcoming introduction of a new artificial sweetener. Rauch-Kallat was scheduled to speak at the very end of the summit. Their fellow ÖVP colleagues’ actions kept her from informing the parliament about her idea to change some parts of the anthem.
The ÖVP’s male members eventually failed in stopping the campaign. The anthem now tells of Austria’s "great daughters, sons" (Heimat großer Töchter, Söhne) instead of praising just the country’s "great sons" (Heimat bist du großer Söhne). ÖVP whip Karlheinz Kopf allegedly masterminded the initiative against Rauch-Kallat’s draft bill presentation. Kopf never commented the issue. He has so far also ignored Schittenhelm’s appeal for a change of Austria’s voting law for more women in politics.
Rauch-Kallat got active in this concern a few months after Heinisch-Hosek was forced to abandon a similar campaign when she was told by fellow SPÖ-ÖVP government members that Austria had to deal with more important issues than whether the anthem’s lyrics should be altered or left unchanged. Heinisch-Hosek yielded at that time and pointed out that she would stick to an alternative version of the anthem which considered Austria’s women anyway whenever she sang it.
» General News 2012-05-31
A renowned economist has warned from reintroducing the drachma in Greece.
» General News 2012-05-31
Austria has been criticised for its high public debts.
» General News 2012-05-31
Peopleís Party (÷VP) Graz Mayor Siegfried Nagl has ended his factionís partnership with the Greens.
How An Austrian Park Every Year Becomes A Lake
Spectacular images that show how a park becomes a lake each spring complete with underwater trees have been captured by two divers.
Mad About Mammoths At Vienna Museum
A unique exhibition in the Austrian capital Vienna has proved a massive hit after bringing together for the first time some of the most famous frozen woolly mammoth remains.
Controversy Over Advert For Fucking Hell Beer
An Austrian political party has defended a decision to promote a local beer named after the village of Fucking.
Luigi Restaurant Cooks Up Delicious Delights For Winter Season
Brothers Luigi and Leo Doci who own the renowned Luigi restaurant chain will be cooking up a storm in Semmering this winter.
Church Porn Star In Court
A Polish-born woman who made a video of herself masturbating in church is facing six months in jail after a viewer called police when he recognised the woman.
Hugh Grant Cuddles Lamb On Animal Farm With Mrs Glock
Hugh Grant led a star-studded turnout at Austria's animal farm project which unveiled its Christmas market this week.
Cheating Wife Buries Hubby Alive For New Lover
A woman who married her sisterís fiance and then attacked him with a knife before burying him alive so she could be with her new lover is facing life in jail.
Spate of Crimes throughout Vienna and Lower Austria Solved
Four men have been arrested after committing 113 break-ins, 21 thefts and causing at least 260,000 Euros worth of damage.
Dad Punished Child, 2, With Boiling Hot Shower
A two-year-old girl is in an artificial coma and fighting for her life after her father threw her into a scalding hot shower leaving her with severe burns at the family home in the Austrian capital Vienna.
Police And Firemen Get Cold Turkey
Flipping the bird was given a new meaning in Austria this week when a truck filled with plucked turkeys overturned, closing a busy motorway in the process.
The most popular stories –
last 7 days
|Controversy Over Advert For Fucking Hell Beer|
|Half Naked Winnie The Pooh Banned From Playground|
|Explosive Flash In Russia Blamed On Meteor|
|Mad About Mammoths At Vienna Museum|
|Plumber Zapped On Private Parts Then Impaled Finds God|
Why suffer in silence. Let off steam by letting our readers share your troubles. File your complaints about anything and everything here.
Our ombudsman David Rogers will try and help solve some of the problems from lazy civil servants through to incompetent companies – and at the very least the worst transgressors will end up in our weekly special report.