Liberal Ministers lead push for She Decides initiative | ALDE Party

Liberal Ministers lead push for She Decides initiative

Ulla Tørnæs, Lilianne Ploumen, Alexander De Croo, Isabella Lövin (from left to right)

More than 45 government representatives of all continents and 400 parliamentarians and civil society participants gathered in Brussels on 2 March to express their support for women’s rights. They raised in total 181 million euros for the Global Fundraising Initiative "She Decides." The Brussels International Conference was co-organised by two Liberal Ministers of Development Cooperation, Alexander de Croo (Belgium) and Ulla Tørnæs (Denmark), together with their counterparts in the Netherlands and Sweden.

The Brussels’ conference focused on sexual and reproductive health and rights, and in particular family planning, as the foundation for gender equality, women’s empowerment and economic development for both men and women, wherever and whoever they are.

Women from Pakistan, Colombia and Mali explained what it means not to have access to reproductive health care. The Ministers for Health of Chad and Ethiopia talked about the challenges in their countries. UN organizations, NGOs and research institutes set out how their work impacts women’s lives and how it contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals which the world has agreed on for 2030.

“The Brussels International Conference is a promising start for the global movement in favor of women’s rights that She Decides aims to be,” said Alexander De Croo, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation of Belgium. “When I launched the idea of gathering in Brussels four weeks ago, I never had hoped so many would come to voice their support. The broad backing of She Decides will uplift millions of girls and women fighting their rights around the world. And this is only the beginning.”

”I warmly welcome the broad support for sexual and reproductive health and rights and the She Decides initiative that today’s conference shows”, says Ulla Tørnæs minister for development cooperation of Denmark. “Millions of the most vulnerable women in the world are at risk of losing access to contraception, information and health services. Therefore, the broad support shown today will change lives and lift the fight for women’s rights all over the world. When we invest in women, everybody wins. It is without a doubt that we cannot reach the Sustainable Development Goals without active participation of women. Therefore, investing in women’s rights is not only the right thing to do, it’s a rational thing to do”.

Read more about the Brussels International Conference here and about the "She Decides" initiative here.