Frances Fitzgerald, MEP and Vice Chair of the EPP Group in the European Parliament, has welcomed the election of MEP Roberta Metsola as the new Parliament President as an important step for gender equality in the EU. “While a deep sense of sadness pervades the Parliament with the passing of former President David Sassoli, it is welcome that we now have a woman leading the European Parliament for the first time since 1999.
“In her speech after being elected President, Roberta Metsola importantly emphasised her commitment towards gender equality and guaranteeing women’s rights at a time when women continue to be targeted and attacked. It is also very welcome that Ms. Metsola made reference to Ashling Murphy and other women whose lives have already been stolen this year – a reminder of the impact that Ashling Murphy’s murder has not just in Ireland, but across Europe.
“President Metsola’s long-standing commitment to safeguarding the Rule of Law and LGBTI+ freedoms across the European continent demonstrates her values and deepest held convictions, and give a very clear grounding and direction for this Parliament for the remainder of this mandate. I look forward to working with her to continuing to protect and defend our European values.
“We now have a female leader of the Parliament, a female leader of the European Commission and a female leader of the European Central Bank. This is progress. This is Europe showing leadership in gender equality. We still have a long way to go but let’s hope this can help to inspire the next generation to strive for a truly equal society.”