1 Öncü Kadınlar Kadın Gündemini İleri Taşıyor Leading Ladies: Turning Backlash into Progress UZMAN TOPLANTISI VE PANEL RAPORLARI EXPERT S MEETİNG AND PUBLIC MEETİNG REPORTS
2 1 Executive Summary Leading Ladies, Turning Backlash in to Progress Sept 4, PM Expert Meeting Report On the afternoon of September 4, 2012, a group of businesswomen, activists, journalists, academics, and government officials, from the Netherlands and Turkey came together in Istanbul to discuss methods of increasing women s participation in political and economic spheres in a private experts meeting. While 70% of Dutch women between the ages of participate in the labour market, the average amount of work hours is only 25 and only 48% of women are economically independent. On the other hand, the rate of women s participation in the labour force in Turkey was recorded to be only 28.8% in However, while the participation of women in executive boards is only 9% in the Netherlands, this figure is much higher in Turkey. Concerning the position of women in academic positions, in Turkey this rate is at 38% while in the Netherlands it is only 13%. Lastly, concerning women s participation in political spheres, the Netherlands has much better figures than Turkey, as 4 out of 12 ministers in the Dutch Cabinet are female, while 40% of our parliament is comprised of women. However there is only one female minister in Turkey and only 78 MPs out 550 in parliament are female. Looking at these figures, it appears that while Turkey has higher rates of female academics and managers than in the Netherlands, women in the Netherlands have a much higher prevalence in Dutch politics than in Turkey. Furthermore, while the labour participation rate of women in the Netherlands is much higher than in Turkey, there are still problems associated with the number (or lack thereof) of women who are economically independent in both countries. The meeting then focused on what policy-makers and relevant actors in each country can learn from each others deficiencies, while weight was given to identifying the factors led to success in impacting the public framework on the perception of the role and rights of women economic, academic, and political spheres. In this line, Carlien Scheele, Director of Gender and LGBT Equality Department at the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, provided general information on the situation in the Netherlands and spoke of various initiatives the Dutch government has promoted in targeting companies to narrow the gender gap in their employees, while heavily emphasizing the importance of the role of companies in creating an overall shift in public framework and promoting women empowerment. Göknur Akçadağ then gave a detailed presentation on facts and figures concerning women s participation in the labour force and politics in Turkey and listed the various initiatives the Turkish government has taken concerning education of girls and women, women s health, violence against women, and increasing women s participation in the labour force. Jannet Vaessen, managing director of women s platform and NGO in the Netherlands WOMEN Inc., then emphasized the significance and usefulness of NGOs as a way to go across domains of women and be in between domains. She then maintained that it is very important not to create a coalition of all the same domain and provide women with networks across many domains and professions, in order to encourage a sense of empowerment and create real change. Pınar İlkkaracan, activist and founder of two women s NGOs, then outlined a detailed history of feminism in Turkey and elaborated on the current problems with conservative
3 2 mentality in Turkey and its negative effect on feminism and women s empowerment initiatives. Focusing on the very unfriendly labour regime for women in Turkey, Professor of political economy Ayşe Buğra also spoke of the impact of conservatism and social policy choices as obstacles for women to start working. She emphasized the importance of transformative as opposed to adaptive remedies, in aiming to reform gender-segregated social space in Turkey and cultural conservatism. Founder and director of Colourful People, Melek Usta then recounted her story of success as a girl born in to an illiterate Turkish family in the Netherlands, and emphasized the importance of access to good education for all and role models for young girls. Finally, Margriet van der Linden, editor of famous feminist magazine Opzij, spoke of the importance of having a platform to share women s stories with the public in impacting women empowerment, and the significance of media in increasing women s public visibility. Following a general Q&A and discussion period involving all participants of the meeting following the individual presentations, a comprehensive list of conclusions and proposals were formulated and outlined. These are listed following the Detailed Report section of this document. Detailed Report Following two preliminary meetings with the Dutch speakers and Turkish organizers, it was concluded that although politics matter, the focus of this meeting is to identify which factors have led to success in impacting the public framework on the perception of the role and rights of women in the Netherlands and Turkey. In doing so, we aim to understand which actors have come in to play in each case and what the role of the government has been, and draw lessons from the results from each country with the end of formulating and outlining a comprehensive list of appropriate policy proposals for the Turkish government. Carlien Scheele Director of the Gender and LGBT Equality Department at the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. Regarding gender equality issues, other states tend to say that the Netherlands has an ideal situation because the Netherlands allows women to work part-time. Looking at some figures, while we see that 70% of women participate in the labour market, the average amount of work hours is only 25. Therefore many women work part-time, while only 48% of women are economically independent. For years, the Dutch government has been trying to stimulate women to work more hours, however struggle with ways to reach these women. The target is for 65% of women to be economically independent, however it is very difficult to reach this when the issue is centralized at home within discussions between men and women. Furthermore, the participation of women in executive boards is only 9% in the Netherlands much lower than in Turkey. Concerning the position of women in academic positions, in Turkey this rate is at 38% while in the Netherlands it is only 13% and this figure is not growing. On the other hand, the Netherlands has much better figures concerning the participation of women in politics, as 4 out of 12 ministers in Cabinet are female, while 40% of our parliament is comprised of women. Concerning policy measures, the main area of concern is how to influence the choices that women make. Culturally, motherhood still very strong in the Netherlands, and many women feel obliged to fulfill this duty and thus feel ashamed if they work too much. Therefore, the
4 3 current government has stated that the focus should be to work towards creating cultural change by supporting NGOs and other organizations in society, and so give many subsidies to local communities and NGOs. One project in this regard aims to interest low education women to work through collaboration with 18 local organizations. Another initiative directly involves creating incentives for companies in this respect, through having a monitor for gender equality (at least 30% women in top positions) that then periodically publishes the results, as a means to shame and showcase those who have bad results. However, this then could only work if companies truly care about these results. Creating a charter for gender equality was also another initiative, aiming for companies who sign this charter to pay the issue more notice, and have to explain what they have done if they haven t reached this percentage. So far 200 companies have signed the charter. Also, there is a discrepancy in how girls and boys in school choose their subjects girls tend to avoid choosing technical subjects. After having ran a major research project on education, the results show that teachers also treat girls and boys differently. While a girl may be praised on achieving a mediocre mark in a technical subject, boys will tend to be chastised having obtained the same mark. Thus, the standards set for boys and girls differ starting at a very young age. Thus there needs to be intervention when boys and girls choose their subjects, as girls tend to not think they re good enough to study technical subjects. It is true that if you have a more left-wing government, LGBT and gender equality and safety issues is treated more rigorously. But with a more right-wing party, this is different. However, it is clear that if you really want to change something, it is paramount to change how companies employ and operate, although many governments can find it very difficult to put a burden on companies. Göknur Akçadağ Although legislation to promote gender equality is currently available in Turkey, the failure of implementation remains. The 2013 targets for the Turkish government in this regard has been to: i) Achieve 100% schooling rate amongst girls ii) Have zero illiteracy amongst women. This has been transformed in to a number of national campaigns, with an aim to make 3 million illiterate women literate. iii) Increase participation of women in the labour force. While the rate of women s participation in the labour force was recorded to be 23.3% in 2004, this has gone up to 28.8% in Meanwhile, women registered with a social security organization went from 72.5% in 2002 to 57.8% in It is also extremely important to take steps in engaging women in decision-making mechanisms. Currently it is not possible to say that there is equal representation in Turkey, as there is only one female minister. However, the number of women MPs increased from 24 to 78 between 2002 and Another important goal, included in the government s 9 th development plan, is to increase the participation of women in the labour market to 35% by While the plan is monitored with reports, a number of legal arrangements have been made to encourage women to participate in all aspects of social life. For example, the Turkish Employment Agency (ISKUR) works to ensure that men and women benefit equally. Also, the protocol of cooperation between the
5 4 Ministry of Family and Social Policies and the Ministry of Labour and Social Security as well as others have been signed. Activities aimed at reducing maternal mortality rates and extending reproductive health services have been in increasing prenatal and postnatal care programs, family planning programs, family planning programs, maternal mortality monitoring programs, awareness-raising activities and conditional health transfers. Furthermore, in order to reduce violence against women, one of the more remarkable steps taken has been to establish the National Research for Domestic Violence Against Women at Hacettepe University, while new research will be finished by next year. Jannet Vaessen Managing Director of WOMEN Inc. While the Netherlands is ahead in the involvement of women in political positions, Turkey is ahead in management positions and science. Therefore, both countries can really learn from each other in how to break certain unwritten rules, while NGOs have a real and important role in this. With various projects, Ms. Scheele has pushed us to create pressure from society. The main importance of NGOs is that they can be in between domains. While the Netherlands maintains a charter for narrowing the gender-gap for companies that is full of compromise, many companies sign their name as window-dressing and tend to not actually know how to realize narrowing the gender gap. However, women who are journalists and company managers, who are also members of civil society, have been able to confront companies and get real results. In this sense, it is important not to create a coalition that is comprised of entirely the same domain, and rather go across many different domains. It is also important to realize that media is developing extremely strongly, and therefore if politicians don t know how to play the media, they go down in the media. Therefore, media should be up with politics as one of the main topics in this area. In unraveling the fact that women are mainly not economically independent in the Netherlands and how vulnerable this makes women, at WOMEN Inc. have developed a very simple method that we call the Table of 1. This title was chosen because if you choose to sit at this table, it is all about you and you are free to share stories, ambitions, fears and thoughts completely about yourself, pertaining to your personal and if applicable, professional life. To this end, we invite women to very simply share what they re proud of and what they re afraid of. This tends to give them an empowered feeling of I want to make another step. Then, because they have this network formed of women who have also jump started these steps toward empowerment, we help them make the steps towards making connections with local actors and the steps that come after that. We find that women tend to be eager to participate in such a project. Pınar İlkkaracan Co-founder of Women for Women s Human Rights (WWHR) NEW WAYS and Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights (CSBR). The feminist movement that started in Turkey in the 80s was quite strong and concentrated on women s issues in the private sphere. Finally, only now has sexual rights finally emerged on the agenda. There have been a few landmark developments in the movement that we can talk about.
6 5 i) Campaign for the Reform of the Turkish Civil Code: Before this development, men were considered head of the household. ii) Campaign for the Reform of the Turkish Penal Code from a Gender Perspective: This brought with it official recognition of women s sexual and bodily autonomy and an overall philosophical change in the way gender was officially and legally treated. The campaign represented a mixed group of women coming together, which was very important. iii) Campaign for the Reform of the Constitution: This resulted in the clause Women and men have equal rights. The state is responsible for realization of the equality. to be inserted in to the constitution. However, this was not what we were aiming for, while what we wanted was de facto equality. iv) The Campaign for Gender Equality in the Constitution: ongoing. v) The Campaign for the Law on Violence against Women (i.e. The Law to Protect the Family and Prevent Violence Against Women): We have been having difficulty in progressing with currently ongoing campaigns, because politics in Turkey right now essentially is a one-man show, in the sense that if the prime minister wants something to happen, it happens, and if not it doesn t. And unfortunately, the prime ministry is becoming more and more unreachable. Despite these developments, unfortunately it seems that the legal reforms have not been able to change the general mentality. In fact, the opposite has happened. The situation is getting worse and conservatism among young people is increasing, while there is a big impact of the government on this. If you compare Turkey with other middle-income countries, there is a huge difference. According to the 2011 Global Gender Gap Report, Turkey ranks 122 nd out of 135 countries. We need to reach the prime ministry because conservative policies by the government have been having a considerable impact on how women and people in general think. For example, the government has stated that each woman should bare 3 children, even though there exist virtually no care institutions in the country. They have also tried the abortion ban, although it didn t pass. Therefore one very important measure that must be taken is that the programs must be holistic: the women s department cannot do anything alone without the prime ministry involved. Ayşe Buğra Professor of Political Economy and co-founder of Social Policy Forum of Bogazici Univeristy We have observed a global transformation in gender roles with female employment increasing drastically throughout the world. However, during three revolutionary decades, female employment in Turkey declined, so Turkey is an exception. In this line, we find that the problem of low female employment in Turkey mainly has to do with the decline of female agricultural labour. In other sectors of labour, there are then two main factors that create a very unfriendly market regime for women. The first factor has to do with conservatism. People express very conservative views with a smiling face, without taking a moralistic attitude. For example, the attitude of Why should a woman work if the husband can bring the bread home? or Why should women leave the home and suffer the consequences?. This then affects female employment through two channels. The first channel reflects and sustains gender segregated social relations; so the idea that women and men don t interact with each other so they can t work in the same environment. The other
7 6 channel is within social policy choices: care functions are very easily assigned and childcare is still not on the agenda. These then coexist with the labour market full of large amounts of unorganized and easily exploitable male workers. Therefore employers are not keen on hiring women because they don t want to adopt the needs of women. There is very low pay for unskilled work and no childcare. Therefore it becomes perfectly rational for women not to want to incur the economic costs of starting to work because they are simply too high. The trade-off is between challenging the existing system of labour and incurring the costs of economic independence. When trying to understand this question, we should distinguish between what we call adaptive remedies and transformative remedies. Adaptive remedies do not really challenge the underlying causes of the issue, and thus it is clear that we need to think about cultural conservatism as it is reflected in the gender-segregated social space in Turkey. We rather need transformative remedies to create decent jobs for women. One problem with legal remedies is that enterprises are permitted to outsource services, while it also creates a disincentive for female employment by companies if the government were to then enforce daycare. The ideal solution would be public care at the municipal level. There are many studies that state that a rise in facilities for childcare has a significant impact on the number of women employment. However, where daycare exists, fertility increases. Thus whether daycare solves the problem depends on cultural contexts. Melek Usta Founging director of Colourful People Ms. Usta started her presentation by stating that she comes from an illiterate family and feels lucky that her parents decided to move to the Netherlands in the 60s, or they may not have had the opportunities that led her to her successes now. In this line, it is very important that there is access to good education in the Netherlands, no matter whether you are poor or rich. Having grown up in a country where every woman could study and go on to try to achieve her goals has personally enormously affected Ms. Usta s success. She maintains that although I didn t have direct role models in my family, my mother always taught me that I needed to make sure I didn t become like her, as she did not work and had no means to ever become independent of my father. She strongly believed that freedom for us would be our economic independence. At the time Ms. Usta got married and had a child, she was still working full-time. After having divorced when her son was 1, she still decided to go on working full-time. In the Netherlands it is relatively unheard of to want to stay working full-time while you have a child and in childcare hours were a disaster, therefore most important senior positions in companies were not very gender-diverse. Seeing the difficulties that women had to go through, Ms. Usta explained that she decided that she had to make a change and built Colourful People. It s still a challenge to get women in to the full-time labour force. Lately, there has been a slight change in the Netherlands because people have been realizing that half of the labour force is not actually used with these figures, however there is still not a very big change. Ms. Usta states that drawing from her own story, I believe that what we need are really active role models who want to help and reach out, tell about their experiences. Also women could greatly benefit from a network like men do for example a new girls network. Otherwise, the most successful factors are education and programs. We saw tremendously good working programs in micro credit, education, and other types of programs to get women visible. It is very important that you empower women.
8 7 Margriet van der Linden Chief Editor of feminist magazine Opzij Media is absolutely necessary to get stories out. In this line, our magazine started on the premise that we need to get women s voices and stories out while women need to hear these voices and that they are not alone in their struggles. Boys sports trophies are twice the size of girls this is the image that children are raised in and this mentality is then carried to the boardroom later on in life. In Cairo, hearing stories shared between women was enough to start a movement. If you have a personal story and personal history, it is very important to have a platform where women can speak up and share these. In this case they will come to you, and strong women who are not afraid to speak up will appear. We need activists to speak out, don t blame them. It seems to me that you hardly read any big stories about women on these issues in Tukey, it s important to have a leading feminist magazine and a platform. Lessons to be Learned: Conclusions and Proposals 1) Because the statistics show the more education show the higher participation in the labour force, higher access to education. a. What needs to be done: It s a long-term thing, however we need to have courses on gender and the otherization of anyone who s different for children starting from preschool on. You have to set it in children s minds that whoever is different should be accepted. There s no other way to go about it. i. It has to be a campaign on the school level but also the media, holistic throughout all aspects of society. Have to address it as a civil rights movement. b. Also decreasing gender gap in high school education. Just primary education is not good enough, although the UN has been selling to the world that they ve solved the education problem through primary education but when you get to high school the numbers plummet again. 2) The messages we re sending in primary education are very important, so very explicit recommendation could be to look at what s going on in our schoolbooks and what s the role modeling going on there. 3) It needs to be government, business, civil societies and media. There is a huge debate about capitalism revisited, we ve giving too much power to business organizations and they re not being responsible. And I think this is a chance to look to businesses to ask what is your role for a more just society? Because they are being attacked in terms of legitimacy and for causing the financial crisis. Businesses can play a very important role here in employing more women and working on these issues. 4) If you want social change, the top administrators have to be involved. There is one way we need to incentivize him, if our prime minister wants to be a top ten economy with where we are in the Gender Gap Reports, without 50% of labour force involved he can never achieve that. We have to use economics and incentives for the government. 5) The only time things changed in the US with the civil rights movement was when businesses weren t getting government contracts we could propose using similar incentives.
9 8 6) Transformative remedies at all levels! Can t just focus on higher levels but have to focus on the lowest common denominator. 7) There has to be public awareness in the Netherlands the government set up a gender gap business monitor and then a charter for companies to sign, promising that they would reach a certain level of gender equality in their businesses. It is a mechanism not only to achieve public awareness but also shame businesses and incentivize them to hire more women etc. 8) Also a quota for women in the administration (in parliament and municipalities) is necessary. 9) But it is important to also talk about diversity of women, not just LGBT women but also Kurdish women, working class women etc. LGBTs are not even considered as women in Turkey, this is a huge problem.
10 9 Leading Ladies, Turning Backlash in to Progress Sept 4, Public Meeting Report Commencing with an introductory speech by Gülden Türktan, the Leading Ladies public meeting, featuring presentations from Turkey s Minister of Family and Social Policies Fatma Şahin and the Netherlands State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science, Marja van Bijsterveldt-Vliegenthart, was held in the afternoon of September 4 th, Moderated by prominent Turkish journalist Meral Tamer, the meeting also featured presentations by Jannet Vaessen who is the managing director of Dutch NGO WOMEN Inc., Margriet van der Linden, editor of Dutch prominent feminist magazine Opzij, and Nur Ger, businesswoman and chair of Gender Equality throughout EU Accession working group, under TUSIAD s Social Affairs Commission. As mentioned by Onno Kervers at the beginning of the meeting, in celebrating the 400 th year of diplomatic relations between Turkey and the Netherlands, both Turkey and the Netherlands see this year as an opportunity to intensify this relationship and address more serious issues, with the end goal of learning from each other. Gülden Türktan started the meeting by mentioning some of the main proposals for the Turkish case that were outlined during the Leading Ladies private Experts Meeting held earlier during the day. She emphasized that promoting a holistic approach within the administration to tackle the task of increasing women employment and political participation was key, as Fatma Şahin can achieve only limited success acting on her own. She maintained that it is extremely important to have all departments of government involved in this pursuit, as well as the general public. She continued by stating the importance of education for young girls and women, while underlining that it is important to create incentives for organizations and individuals to gain their support. Concerning the participation of women in politics, taking example of the Netherlands, who is a paragon in this respect, a quota for women in government is suggested. Furthermore, as the Turkish Constitution is currently under state of revision, it is strongly suggested that women s right and gender equality issues command more attention in this working draft. Finally, as Turkey aims to be within the top ten economies of the world, it is paramount for the government, and especially the higher echelons of administration, to realize that this can only be achieved with hıgher participation from the labour force. With such a low rate of labour participation by women and disastrous gender gap, achieving this goal will not possible. In this line, having daytime child-care institutions is then very important. In her presentation, Marja van Bijsterveldt-Vliegenthart commenced by explaining that celebrating relations for over 400 years is also about looking in to the future, and therefore the Leading Ladies meeting is about helping each other progress. She continued by explaining that although the Netherlands is high ranking in terms of women s education, participation in politics, and health, there are some things that they can learn from Turkey, as Turkey has more female academics, top managers, and has had a woman prime minister. Also, many women in the Netherlands are not economically independent and are subjected to domestic violence, which makes them vulnerable. Concerning women in politics, Ms. Van Bijsterveldt stated that Turkey should be very proud of what has already been achieved in the past few years, and at this rate will continue to take many steps forward. She also stated that she is glad that there is a new Minister in government, reiterating that it is very important to have enough women in politics. She also maintained that national policy is what will help on the local level, while it is important
11 10 that women NGOs are talking to people on the local level. Underlining the importance of the interacting dynamics of the local and national level, she argued that the rate of girls who now have had primary education represents a very large step taken. Explaining that when women have ideas and visions about society, they will go to the political area so as to have their own voice, she underlined that it is therefore very important that education is being promoted so intensely. This being said, as Meral Tamer pointed out, although Turkey has achieved great success in primary education, there is still a huge disparity in higher levels of education, and therefore Ms. Van Bijsterveldt maintained that it is paramount that measures are taken to ensure that students stay in school until they have their qualifications, while in the Netherlands, they have a rule that students must stay in school until they are 16. She concluded by explaining that with regards to this issue, Ms. Van Bijsterveldt s department has its own budget for gender equality and LGBT emancipation, while they work with other departments such as the Department of Justice and Safety, the Department of Internal Affairs and the Department of Social Affairs. They then draft policy working together, in a holistic approach. Ms. Van Bijsterveldt s speech was followed by Fatma Şahin s presentation. Ms. Şahin commenced her speech by remarking on the fact that it was civil society that brought us together and promoted this event, and therefore this is testament to the strength of civil society. She continued to say that women s issues and women s policies are extremely important and relevant when thinking of what kind of Turkey and what kind of world we want to create. She went on to explain that as we work towards narrowing the gender gap and thinking about what will keep us on our feet and continuously strong role models in this increasingly competitive world, it is important to understand that without women s strengths in their emotional intelligence, discipline, cooperation, and communication skills, an economy cannot thrive. The question that we must work on now is rather how can we use these strengths to take us even farther. Given this, she underlined the importance of educating our girls and women. Pointing out that by working together, Turkey has now achieved a rate of 98.5% of girls in primary education, she stated that we now must surmount this achievement by taking these numbers to the university level, while the number of girls in universities has increased from 12% to 30% in the past ten years, with 1.7 out of 3.8 million university students being girls. She continued to explain that secondly, achieving higher rates of economic independence for women is a very important issue that we must fix. Looking at the labour participation rate of women, she went on to state that we see these numbers go up to 70% for girls who have university degrees, reiterating the importance of university education. Ms. Şahin then explained that the government has been attempting a few different methods to tackle this issue. One of these is through the promotion of an incentive system, where she explained that traditionally, the Turkish people expect many things from women. Thus, it is imperative that we ease our women s lives through means of social support such as childcare and care for the elderly. Also, it is important that we take steps to make it easier for women to access capital and financial support, while positive discrimination for women is required. She continued by pointing out that off-the-books employment is still a prominent problem within women employment, and so working through social security measures in opening child-care facilities in places where there is most off-the-books employment is a measure that is now being worked on. She went on to explain that work is being done on passing gender-budgeting measures, which would include specific budgeting for child-care facilities in the near future, although the logistics have not been worked out fully yet and such a budget has not yet been realized.
12 11 The presentations by the two ministers were then followed by brief presentations by Jannet Vaessen, Nur Ger and Margriet van der Linden. Jannet Vaessen started her presentation by suggesting that what they do with WOMEN Inc. in the Netherlands could perhaps inspire women here in Turkey in making connections needed between all domains. She went on to explain that the main importance of NGOs is that they can be in between domains. Women who are journalists and company managers, who are also members of civil society, have been able to confront companies and get real results. In this sense, it is important not to create a coalition that is comprised of entirely the same domain, and rather go across many different domains. Nur Ger then continued with her presentation, citing examples of many famous women who have made a difference throughout history, and going on to explain that at Suteks, they implement positive discrimination for women employment, underlining that it is unacceptable that Turkey has such low numbers of women employment. She concluded by stating that she fully supports a part-time work model to be implemented in Turkey, specifically targeted for women. Margriet van der Linden then went on to explain that media is absolutely necessary to get stories out and that Opzij magazine started on the premise that we need to get women s voices and stories out while women need to hear these voices and that they are not alone in their struggles. She went on to state that the world is getting more conservative and that the first victims of this conservatism tends to be women, suggesting that she thinks that feminism needs to become a fully-formed and active movement again.
13 12 Öncü Kadınlar Kadın Gündemini İleri Taşıyor 4 Eylül, Panel Raporu 4 Eylül günü KAGİDER Başkanı Gülden Türktan ın açılış konuşması ile başlatılan Öncü Kadınlar Kadın Gündemini İleri Taşıyor paneli, Türkiye Aile ve Sosyal İşler Bakanı Fatma Şahin ve Hollanda Eğitim, Kültür ve Bilim Bakanı Marja van Bijsterveldt-Vliegenthart tarafından konuşmalar içerdi. Meral Tamer in moderatörlüğünü üstlendiği panelde, Hollanda da WOMEN Inc. STK sının direktörü olan Jannet Vaessen, Hollandalı ünlü feminist ve Opzij dergisinin editörü olan Margriet van der Linden ve TÜSİAD ın Sosyal İşler Komisyonu na bağlı olarak çalışan AB Sürecinde Kadın-Erkek Eşitliği çalışma grubunun başkanı olan iş kadını Nur Ger de sunum yaptılar. Onno Kervers in panelin başında söz ettiği gibi, Türkiye ve Hollanda nın diplomatik ilişkilerinin kutlandığı bu senede, hem Türkiye hem Hollanda bu yılı ilişkilerini güçlendirip daha ciddi meseleler üzerinde tartışmak ve birbirinden öğrenerek çözüm önerilerine doğru yol kat etmek için bir fırsat olarak değerlendiriyor. Gülden Türktan, gün içinde evvelden gerçekleşen uzman toplantısının sonucunda Türkiye vakası için belirlenmiş birkaç önergeden bahsederek paneli başlattı. Bu bağlamda, öncelikle kadınların ekonomik ve siyasi hayata katılım ve hakimiyetlerini arttırmak için bütünselci bir bakışın önemini vurgulayarak, Bakan Şahin in kendi başına, hükümetin farklı dallarından ve genel toplumdan destek almayarak başarabileceklerinin ancak sınırlı olacağını açıkladı. Bununla birlikte, kız ve kadınlar için eğitiminin öneminin altını çizerek, kurum ve bireylerin desteklerini almak için insiyatif oluşturmanın çok önemli olduğunu belirtti. Kadınların siyasete katılımları konusunda, Hollanda dan örnek alarak kadınlar için hükümette bir kota sistemi uygulanmasını önerdi. Bunun yanında, Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Anayasası nın şu anki düzenleme aşaması altında olduğu göze alınarak, kadın hakları ve cinsiyet eşitliği konularının bu alanda daha ağırlıklı bir şekilde işlenmesi gerekildiğini açıkladı. Son olarak, Türkiye nin dünya ekonomileri arasından ilk ona girmeyi hedeflediğini göz önünde tuttuğumuzda, bunun ancak istihdama daha yüksek katılım oranlarıyla mümkün olacağının farkında olmamız gerektiğini belirtti. Bunun için kadınların istihdama katılım oranlarını arttırıp cinsiyetler arası uçurumu azaltmanın şart olduğunu açıkladı. Bu bağlamda, gündüz içi çocuk kreşleri vb. projeler üzerine çalışmaları geliştirmenin çok önemli olduğunu söyledi. Gülden Türktan ın açışılından sonra, Bakan van Bijsterveldt, Türkiye ve Hollanda arası diplomatik ilişkilerin 400. yılını kutlamamızın aynı zamanda geleceğe bakmakla ilgili olduğunu açıklayarak, bu panelde de gelecek için birbirimizin gelişimine yardımcı olmamız amacıyla bir araya geldiğimizi açıklayarak sunumuna başladı. Bununla ilişkili olarak, Hollanda nın kadınların eğitimi, siyasete katılımı ve kadın sağlığında iyi sonuçlar sergilemiş olmasına rağmen, Türkiye nin daha yüksek sayıda kadın akademisyeni, kadın yöneticileri ve bugüne kadar Hollanda da olmadığı şekilde bir kadın başbakanı olmuş olmasından dolayı, Türkiye den hala öğrenebilecekleri birçok şey olduğunu belirtti. Bunun yanında, Hollanda da birçok kadının ekonomik bağımsızlığı olmadığını ve aile içi şiddete maruz kaldığını belirterek, Hollanda da birçok kadının bu nedenle hala yüksek derecede korumasız olduğunu açıkladı. Kadınların siyasete katılımı konusunda, Bakan van Bijsterveldt Türkiye nin son birkaç yılda kat ettiği yol konusunda çok gurur duyması gerektiğini belirterek bu hızda yakın zaman içerisinde daha birçok adım atmaya devam edeceğinde kuşku duymadığını belirtti. Bunun yanında, Türkiye hükümetinde yeni bir bakan olduğuna sevindiğini belirterek, yönetimde kadın olmasının çok
14 13 önemli olduğunu söyledi. Aynı zamanda, ulusal politikaların yerel seviyede kadın politikacıları destekleyecek temel unsurunu olduğunu belirterek, bu bağlamda yerel seviyede STK ların toplumla düzenli iletişim içinde olmasının da şart olduğunu belirtti. Etkileşim içinde olan yerel ve ulusal dinamiklerin öneminin altını çizerek, şu anda ilköğretime kayıtlı kızların yüzdesinin çok önemli bir adımı temsil ettiğini açıkladı. Kızların ve genç kadınların gelecekleri ile ilgili fikir ve öngörüleri olduğu durumda seslerini duyurmak için siyasal alana geçeceklerini açıklayan Bakan van Bijsterveldt, bu bağlamda kızların ilköğretime kayıtlarının bu yoğunlukta teşvik edilmesinin ne kadar önemli olduğunu tekrarladı. Buna rağmen, Meral Tamer in de ifade ettiği gibi, Türkiye nin ilköğretimde büyük bir başarı sergilemiş olmasına rağmen, daha yüksek seviyede eğitimde hala büyük bir boşluğun olduğu açıkça ortada. Bu bağlamda, Bakan van Bijsterveldt, öğrencilerin liseyi bitirene kadar okulda kalmalarını teşvik edecek önlemlerin uygulamaya geçirilmesinin çok önemli olduğunu belirtip, Hollanda da her öğrencinin en az 16 yaşına kadar okulda kalması gerektiğini açıkladı. Bakan van Bijsterveldt, kendi bakanlığının cinsiyete dayalı özel bir bütçesi olduğunun açıklayarak, bu konuda aynı zamanda Adalet ve Güvenlik Bakanlığı, İç İşler Bakanlığı ve Sosyal İşler Bakanlığıyla beraber çalıştığını belirtti. Bunun devamında, beraber çalışarak, bütünsel bir yaklaşımla politika ve yönetmelik hazırladıklarını belirtti. Bakan van Bijsterveldt in konuşması, Bakan Fatma Şahin in sunumuyla devam etti. Şahin konuşmasına başlarken, kendilerini biraraya getiren ve bu etkinliğe öncü olan etkenin sivil toplum oduğunu belirterek, öncelikle sivil toplumun gücüne değindi. Kadın meselesinin ve politikalarının çok önemli olduğunun altını çizen Şahin, nasıl bir Türkiye ve dünya hedeflediğimizin bu konuyla yakından ilgisi olduğunu vurguladı. Rekabetin hızla arttığı dünyada ayakta kalabilmenin ve daha güçlü rol modeller olabilmenin yolları arandığında; kadının güçlü tarafları, duygusal zekası, disiplini, iş birliği ve iletişim becerisi olmadan ekonominin canlanamayacağının üzerinde önemle durdu. Bizim şu an üzerinde çalışmamız gereken sorunun, bu güçlü yanları bizi daha ilerilere götürmesi için nasıl kullanacağımızı anlamak olduğunu belirtti. Bu konuyla ilgili olarak, kız ve kadınların eğitiminin önemine de dikkat çekti. Yapılan iş birliği sayesinde, Türkiye de kızların ilk öğretim görme oranının % 98.5 a ulaştığını belirten Şahin, şu anki amaçlarının bu oranı üniversite derecesine taşımak olduğunu ekledi. Ayrıca, üniversitedeki kız öğrenci sayısının % 12 den % 30 a çıktığına ve üniversitedeki 3.4 milyon öğrenciden 1.7 milyonun kız olduğuna dikkat çekti. Konuşmasına devam ederken, ekonomik özgürlükte daha yüksek oranlar görmenin öncelikli amacımız olması gerektiğini belirtti. İstihdama bakıldığında, üniversite mezunu olan kadınlarımızda oranın %70 e çıktığını söyleyerek, üniversitenin önemini bir kez daha ortaya koydu. Şahin, daha sonra, hükümetin bu konuyu yola koymak için çeşitli yöntemler denemeye başladığını açıkladı. Şahin in açıklamalarına göre, bu yöntemlerden biri bir teşvik sistemi oluşturarak geleneksel olarak beklentimizi fazla yüksek tuttuğumuz kadının hayatını çocuk ve yaşlı bakımı gibi sosyal destek türleriyle kolaylaştırmaktır. Ayrıca, kadınların sermaye ve finansa ulaşmasını da daha kolay hale getirmek konusunda adımlar atmamız ve kadın tarafına pozitif ayrımcılık yapılmamız da bu çalısmalar arasındadır. Konuşmasına devam ederken, kayıtdışı istihdamın hala çok büyük bir problem olduğunu, bu konuyla mücadele etmek için şu an üzerinde çalışılan yöntemin ise bu tipte istihdamın çok yoğun olduğu bölgelerde kreşlerin açılması olduğunun altını çizdi. Cinsiyete duyarlı bütçe konusunda da önemli calışmalar yapıldığını belirten Şahin, bu çalışmalardan birinin çocuk bakımı tesisleri için belirli bütçeleme yapılması olduğunu belirterek konuşmasını sonlandırdı.
15 14 Etkinlik, iki bakanın sunumundan sonra Jannet Vaessen, Nur Ger ve Margriet van der Linden in kısa sunumlarıyla devam etti. Jannet Vaessen konuşmasına, Hollanda daki Women INC. te yapılanların, Türkiye deki kadınlara bütün çalışma alanları arasında bağlantılar yapma konusunda ilham verebileceğine değinerek başladı. STK ların en büyük öneminin ise bu çalışma alanlarının arasında olabilmeleri olduğunu vurguladı. Ayrıca, gazeteci ve şirket yöneticisi olan, aynı zamanda da sivil toplumun bir parçası olan kadınların şirketlerle yüzleştiğinin ve somut sonuçlar alabildiğinin de altını çizdi. Bu anlamda, sadece aynı çalışma alanından oluşan bir koalisyon kurmaktansa, farklı tipte çalışma alanlarını dahil etmenin önemine dikkat çekti. Bir sonraki konuşmacı olan Nur Ger, sunumuna geçmişte büyük başarılara imza atmış kadınlardan örnkeler vererek başladı. Daha sonra, Suteks te kadına karşı pozitif ayrımcılık yaptıklarını ve ülkemizde kadın istihdamının bu kadar düşük olmasının kabul edilemez olduğunu belirtti. Konuşmasını bitirirken, özellikle kadınları hedefleyen yarı zamanlı iş modelinin Türkiye de uygulamaya koyulmasını desteklediğini de sözlerine ekledi. Son konuşmacı olan Margriet van der Linden sunumuna, kadın hikayalerini kamuoyuna duyurmada medyanın ne kadar önemli olduğunun altını çizerek başladı. Obzij dergisinde baz aldıkları ana fikrin, kadının sesini ve hikayelerini duyurmanın gerekliliği ve kadınların bu hikayeleri duyup bu mücadelede yanlız olmadıklarını anlamalarının önemi olduğunu da sözlerine ekledi. Linden, dünyanın gittikçe daha muhafazakarlaştığını ve bu durumun ilk kurbanlarının da kadınlar olduğunu belirtirken, feminizmin tekrardan tamamen biçim verilmiş ve aktif bir akım haline gelmesinin gerekli olduğunu söyleyerek sözlerini tamamladı.