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Feminists fight for seats and rights

Published: 05 Sep 2014 17:13 GMT+02:00

Sixteen years ago Gudrun Schyman led Sweden’s post-communist Left Party to its best ever election result, as it suddenly found itself the country's third-biggest party. 

Next weekend she could be set to work another miracle as Feminist Initiative, the party she now leads, nudges ever closer to the four percent it needs to get a foot in the door of the Swedish parliament.

SEE ALSO: Gudrun Schyman - Polemicist prepares for political comeback

Founded in 2005, the party scored its biggest election success earlier this year; back in May it sprung a major surprise by securing a seat in the European Parliament with a 5.3 percent share of the Swedish vote.

While success in Europe is notoriously difficult for fringe parties to replicate on the home front, Schyman’s party has shown a tenacity that could make it the pink part of an unprecedented red-green-pink coalition.


But what does it stand for? The Local takes a peek at the party’s key plans for Sweden.

Employment

  • An accessible labour market free from discrimination
  • Individualize parental leave schemes to boost gender equality
  • Reduce working hours
  • Combine unemployment, medical and social security benefits into a single social insurance scheme
  • Increase minimum pension rates

Welfare

  • A more robust welfare system
  • Guarantee the right to full-time employment
  • Ensure access to childcare for people with irregular working hours
  • Strengthen rights to assistance for people with disabilities
  • Roll back RUT, a scheme that allows tax deductions for household services

Education

  • Ensure education equality
  • Re-nationalize the education system
  • Encourage more critical thinking in schools and pre-schools 

Security and human rights

  • Criminalize sex without consent
  • Open borders and amnesty for refugees
  • End weapons exports
  • Cut military spending

Sustainability and planning

  • State subsidies for cheap public housing
  • Tax greenhouse gas emissions from food production

Rather handily, Feminist Initiative has published its election manifesto in English, so click here if you’d like to look at the fine print.

Sweden's elections - who's who?

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The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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