March is the month of Indonesian women’s political agenda

March 12, 2014

The celebration of International Women’s Day may have passed, but as the legislative election is only a month away, Indonesian women’s movements are using the March 8 momentum to increase political awareness among women politicians and the broader public. As many as 100 women’s organisations and 10 individuals have allied to bring the “Month of Women’s Political Agenda” social movement. Hivos is very proud to support the movement, not only because it is in line with our Women’s Leadership Programme, but also as part of global solidarity for women.

The “Month of Women’s Political Agenda” kicked off with the launch of the agenda on March 7, 2014 in Jakarta and will continue throughout the month. This movement aims to increase the participation of women in government policy making by emphasizing the importance of women’s perspectives in building and developing national policies and ensuring their voices are heard throughout Indonesia.  The various awareness-raising activities include talk-shows, long marches, feminism dialogues and a writing contest.

There 10 points of the women’s political agenda are:  1) fulfilment of SRHR 2) ensuring the right to education; 3)  ending Violence Against Women ; 4) ending poverty among women through social protection; 5) protection of women in conflict and disaster areas; 6) ensuring the right to Decent Work; 7) protection of freedom of faith and worship; 8) ensuring women’s political rights; 9) revoking laws that discriminate against women and minorities; and 10) ending corruption.

At the moment there are six cities participating in the movement: Makassar in Sulawesi, Bali; Blitar, Jember, Malang in Java; and Jakarta. More cities and organisations will follow in Medan and Bengkulu in Sumatra, and Banyuwangi and Cirebon in Java.

Throughout the month, the movement will distribute a position letter with the ten-point political agenda to every woman legislative candidate to include in their campaign material.  The letter will also be made available to the general public so they can monitor whether the candidates are campaigning on the agenda.

By joining forces, the participating organisations and individuals are expected to reach at least 23 out of 33 provinces in Indonesia with a unified public campaign. Well-known and important organisations are involved, including present and former Hivos partners, such as Migrant Care, KAPAL Perempuan, AMAN Indonesia, Kalyanamitra and KPI (Koalisi Perempuan Indonesia).