The European Commission has refused to define the word "woman" despite a formal request by an MEP. (EPA/OLIVIER HOSLET)


European Commission refuses to define the word ‘woman’


The European Commission has refused to define the word “woman” despite a formal request to do so from an MEP.

Mathilde Androuët, a member of Marine Le Pen’s Rassemblement National party, asked in a written parliamentary question for the EC to give its “definition of the term ‘woman’” as well as to clarify whether it thinks of “being a woman as a biological reality or a feeling”.

Writing in response to the request, Equality Commissioner Helena Dalli failed to address either query, instead saying the EC “promotes equality for all in the EU”.

“When striving to achieve equality between men and women, the Commission takes into consideration both the discrimination based on their physical characteristics and discrimination on the grounds of sex which stems from misconceptions and prejudices about socially constructed roles, behaviours, activities and attributes that a given society considers appropriate for women and men,” she said.

Dalli also failed to answer two other questions asked by Androuët regarding the number of children who have “transitioned gender” within the bloc, as well as whether the EC thought it was right for transgender women – who are biological males – to compete against biological females in sporting events.

The commissioner said that the body lacked any data on the number of children who have changed their gender within the EU, before giving a vague answer on transgender individuals in competitive sports.

“The Commission is aware of the International Olympic Committee’s Framework on Fairness, Inclusion and Non-Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity and Sex Variations,” she wrote, despite there being no mention of the Olympics in the original question.

“This Framework provides a 10-principle approach to help sporting bodies develop the criteria that are applicable to their sport and ensure a level playing field,” she added.

“The Commission hopes that this approach will allow the persons concerned to participate in events in the area of sports.”

The EC’s apparent decision to refrain from defining the word “woman” comes amid an ongoing culture war regarding transgenderism and LGBT+ values that has gripped much of the Western world, including the EU.

Many states within the bloc have come out hard against the promulgation of progressive ideology regarding the subject, with Hungary even passing measures restricting the distribution of pro-LGBT+ content to children.

That move provoked outrage from Brussels, with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen denouncing the measure as a “disgrace”.