KDS Latvia and ECPM organized a roundtable on gender equality and Christian democracy in Riga on 26, September, 2014. The KDS chairman Mara Victoria Zilgalve, general secretary Armands Agrums and other KDS representatives together with Latvian MPs, representatives of different Christian denominations, NGOs and active public figures participated in the roundtable discussion a week before Latvia’s parliamentary elections. Apart from gender equality issues, recent pressure from ultra liberal and LGBT lobbyists on the governments of the new EU member states was debated during the event.
ECPM was represented by Honorary President Peeter Vosu, Vice President George Rukhadze and former Vice President Kris Vleugels, who actively contributed to the roundtable.
ECPM Vice President George Rukhadze stated that, from the 90s on, an ultra liberal lobby has been very strong and managed to advance its agenda rapidly while Christians simply reacted on particular liberal agenda items instead of pushing their own agenda. "We have to be pro-active and positively aggressive in promoting our values and policies such as human dignity, family values and freedom of faith and conscience alongside criticizing and counteracting to ultra liberal tendencies” he said.
As Inga Bite, an ECPM member MP from Lativa, put it, the unity is something that Christian politicians lack. “All Christian forces should get together to stand up for our values and not just fight against something but for something. Let’s take woman’s rights. It has been the lack of activity from Christian politicians which resulted in gender equality issues being associated only with liberal parties. There is nobody who can understand women’s needs and protect their rights better than we can”, she was quoted as saying.
The roundtable discussion generated a keen interest from the Latvian public and was covered by various media outlets.