Spain's New Female-Majority Cabinet Just Made Herstory
The new cabinet includes 11 women, an openly gay judge, and an astronaut.
Spain welcomed a new prime minister over the weekend and, with him, a trailblazing cabinet.
Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced his picks at a press conference on Wednesday, naming 11 women for key positions in his 17-member cabinet and setting a new record, the Guardian reported. On Thursday morning, the historic administration was sworn in by King Felipe VI.
Sánchez’s cabinet exceeds the previous record for female representation among Spain’s government leaders set by José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero cabinet — in which women held nine of the 17 senior posts — in 2008. With women holding 65% of the positions, Sánchez’s cabinet also far outpaces that of his ousted predecessor Mariano Rajoy, which had just five women, in the race toward gender equality in Spanish politics.
In fact, according to Politico, Spain’s new cabinet has the highest proportion of women among Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) members, beating out Finland, which previously held the record with women making up 62.5% of its cabinet. However, Sweden still boasts the most women in its cabinet, among European countries, with 12 positions held by women and 11 filled by men.
"This new government is unequivocally committed to equality,” Sánchez said on Wednesday. “You have heard me say it many times: Spain changed on March 8,” he said, pointing to the nationwide women’s strike on International Women’s Day as the catalyst for Spain’s recent effort to tackle gender inequality.
“There was a before and an after in our country with the feminist mobilizations, and the new government is a faithful reflection of that movement," Sánchez said. The cabinet has been warmly received on social media and many are praising the country’s move toward establishing gender equality.
Spain not only has now the highest percentage of women in government in the whole world (11 / 17 ministers), but also the highest percentage of gay men (at least 2 ministers). Onward progressive #Spain!— Berta Herrero (@Be_Herrero) June 6, 2018
Spain’s new cabinet is made up of 11 women and 6 men (65% female).— Justin McAleese (@justin_mcaleese) June 7, 2018
More of this please!
In Ireland, 27% of our cabinet is female. @Together4yes was led and won by the women of Ireland. Its time to channel that energy into @women4election.#equalityhttps://t.co/vsSqq8UQUD
Spain’s (my homeland) new Cabinet was sworn in today: more women than men - two gay men - no bible present - a State Department devoted to the Environment/Climate Change, another one to Equality... Today, loving her hurts a lot less! ❤️— María Mínguez Arias (@MariaMinguezAr1) June 7, 2018
Spain’s new Council of Ministers is formed by 11 women and 6 men (2 of them gay) 🙌🏻— Álvaro 🧜🏻♂️ (@caravanb0y) June 6, 2018
Spain's new cabinet sends a strong signal for more #equality and shows that @sanchezcastejon stands by his promise to create “a gov for an equal society": 11 women, 6 men (& 2 openly gay) ministers.— Johannes Klein (@joha_klein) June 7, 2018
According to @DaveKeating the first majority-female government in EU history.
Today, Spain has become the country with more female ministers in world history. Today, 64.7% of our government (11 out of 17) are women 💪🏽💪🏽 #8MLaLuchaContinúa— Nerea Irigoyen (@NereaIrigoyen) June 6, 2018
Gracias @sanchezcastejon por un gobierno que apuesta por una España diversa y europea, alejada del populismo baratero, que mezcla el talento con los sueños de muchos, y que sobretodo pilota esta revolución imparable que lideran las mujeres. 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏— pere joan pons (@perejoanpons) June 6, 2018
“Thank you @sanchezcastejon for a government that best on a diverse and European Spain, moving away from ‘cheap’ populism, that mixes the talent and dreams of many, and above all pilots this unstoppable women-led revolution,” one tweet in Spanish read.
Es nuestro momento. Por fin un gobierno reconoce los valores de las mujeres. Hasta el periódico @elpais_espana ha nombrado a una mujer, como directora: Soledad Gallego-Diaz . Mujeres al poder!— Carmen Sarmiento (@CarmenSarmient1) June 7, 2018
“It’s our time. Finally, a government that recognizes the value of women. Even the newspaper @elpais_espana has appointed a woman as Director: Soledad Gallego-Diaz. Power to women!” another tweeted.
The new cabinet also includes former astronaut Pedro Duque, journalist and writer Màxim Huerta, and openly gay judge and LGBTQ activist Fernando Grade Marlaska.
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