On 28-29 September 2022, the Council of Europe, in cooperation with the Georgian Central Election Commission (CEC) and the Electoral Systems Development, Reforms and Training Center, carried out a training on ‘Promoting women’s participation in electoral processes’.
The training was the opportunity for representatives of political parties to exchange views on international and domestic instruments securing gender equality in electoral processes, and moreover, to acquire the necessary practical skills, in various fields, for women’s political empowerment.
Deputy Head of the Council of Europe’s Elections and Participatory Democracy Division, Franck Daeschler, Chairperson of the Central Election Commission of Georgia, Giorgi Kalandarishvili, Chairperson of the CEC Gender Equality Council, Maia Zaridze, and Director of the Training Center, Natia Zaalishvili, delivered opening remarks underlining importance of the role of women in electoral processes – necessity of importance to enhance women’s active participation in decision-making.
Women representatives (candidates) from major political groups – Georgian Dream – Democratic Georgia, United National Movement, For Georgia, Lelo, Alliance of Patriots, Strategy Aghmashenebili, European Socialists and European Democrats – Movement for Liberty – discussed, inter alia, challenges related to the impact of electoral systems on women’s representation, obstacles to women’s participation in electoral processes, the culture of debate, leadership as well as communication strategies etc. Introducing the Council of Europe acquis in gender equality and enhancing balanced representation of men and women in a decision-making was a cross-cutting issue during these intensive two-days training.
Women representatives from political groups and representatives of the election administration exchanged views on possible solutions to overcome the existing barriers that women (candidates) face. The Council of Europe’s electoral support Project will provide continuous support in promoting dialogue platforms among national electoral stakeholders aiming at enhancing women’s political participation.
The training was organised within the framework of the Council of Europe Project ‘Supporting Transparency, Inclusiveness and Integrity of Electoral Practice and Process in Georgia’.