Greens want fines for too many male MPs
Austria’s Green party is campaigning to have more women in parliament and has suggested that parties with less than 50 percent female members of parliament should be fined.
This would affect all of Austria’s parliamentary parties - except the Greens, who have 13 female MPs and 11 male MPs.
Depending on the size of their faction, political parties receive around €47,000 a year per MP from the parliamentary budget. The Greens are suggesting that parties be fined the same amount for every male MP over a quota of 50 percent.
The right-wing Freedom Party would suffer the most from such a move, as it has only seven female MPs and 33 male MPs - so would end up with a €1.2 million fine.
The conservative People’s Party (ÖVP) would also be hard hit, with only 13 female MPs, compared to 34 male. The Social Democrats (SPÖ) have 17 female MPs and 35 male MPs. Even the liberal Neos party has only one female MP, to eight male MPs.
Greens party leader Eva Glawischnig admitted that such a move would be extreme and drastic but she was willing to discuss how the proposal might be implemented.
Austria has 183 seats in its national council, 32.2 percent of which are occupied by women. In comparison, Germany has 36.5 percent women in parliament, Denmark has 39.1 percent and Spain 39.7 percent, according to data from the Inter-Parliamentary Union.