Tue, Oct 25, 2011 - Page 3 News List

Tsai Ing-wen pledges to promote sexual equality

RIGHTS FOR ALL:Tsai, who also promised to protect new immigrants and gays, said one-third of elected officials should be female and said women can facilitate harmony

By Chris Wang  /  Staff Reporter

A girl waves the flag of Democratic Progressive Party Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen before Tsai’s press conference at the Bali Cultural Park in New Taipei City yesterday.

Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday said her administration would keep promoting gender equality and emphasize women’s political participation, as well as pass legislation to protect people of all races, genders and sexual orientations if she were elected president in January.

The DPP has always prided itself on being a political party that stresses gender equality and respects human rights for all since its foundation and it will continue to do so, Tsai told representatives from women’s organizations from across the nation at a symposium.

Tsai discussed the draft White Paper on her gender policy in the symposium and took questions from the representatives.

She said if she became the first female president in Taiwan, her administration would prioritize increasing women’s political participation and make sure no less than one-third of officials and elected representatives were female.

The new government will -respect the rights of homosexuals, alternative families and new immigrant families and try to protect their welfare and treatment through legislation, as well as improving gender education in schools, she said.

“We should look at new immigrant families as Taiwan’s precious assets that could enrich our cultural diversity. Rather than forcing them to adapt to our culture, we should respect all cultures and in the future make them part of Taiwan’s mainstream culture,” Tsai said.

The rights of common-law and same-sex couples should be protected exactly the same as for everyone else, she said, adding that the government should tackle the issue through legislation and -prepare -society, conservatives in particular, for necessary adjustment.

Tsai pledged to devote more government resources to easing women’s burdens and to safeguarding women’s personal safety.

A judicial system with awareness of gender equality should also be in place as the last line of defense for civil rights, she said.

Her campaign calls for support for “Taiwan’s first female president” not because it is a “trendy” or “fashionable” idea, but because women are often more able to solve problems in a harmonious way through better communication than men, Tsai said.

Women are usually more perseverant and persistent as well, she said.

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