Awakening Foundation

Gender Equality
A social movement organization dedicated to the pursuit of women's rights and gender equality, with a grasp on policy research, institutional reforms, and street protests. Founded during the surging wave of democratization in Taiwan in the 1980s, the group addresses a wide range of issues and often humorously refers to itself as 'living by the seaside' with a broad outlook.

The Awakening Foundation was formed by a group of feminists who established a magazine in 1982. This became a foundation in 1987 with the lifting of martial law, with many experts on women’s rights and gender equality issues to serve as directors, with 6 or 7 people working in the office. In 40 years, the Awakening Foundation has engaged in advocacy on a number of issues. In 1994, the Awakening Foundation trained a number of volunteers for legal consultations, establishing a service hotline for marriage law that provides services to more than 2,000 daily.

The Foundation's early work focused on the legalization of abortion and ending child sex trafficking. Along with a coalition of civil society organizations, it went on to successfully lobby for amendments to the Civil Code; the passage of landmark legislation concerning domestic violence, sexual assault and harassment, and gender equality in employment and education; and the establishment of a permanent gender policy committee in the Executive Yuan.

In recent years, the Foundation has advocated for federal family leave entitlements and paid leave for long-term care; mandatory workplace anti-discrimination policies; bodily integrity, freedom of sexual choice, and consent culture; marriage equality; and gender mainstreaming. Also, we continuously monitor gender equality issues in the education, media, and judicial systems, as well as in pension policies.

Record book
Petition: Please Respect the Opinions of Women

6/20/1984 at the Legislative Yuan

To call for the legalization of abortion, the Awakening Magazine, along with other women's groups, the Consumer's Foundation, the Taipei Young Women's Christian Association, the Dangwai Editors and Authors Association's Women's Committee, and 154 women presented a petition entitled "Please Respect the Opinions of Women" at the Legislative Yuan. This was the first action by women's organizations in Taiwan calling for the passage of legislation under martial law.

The "Two Genders Equality Law" Reaches Third Reading in Legislature

12/21/2001 at the Legislative Yuan

The Awakening Foundation in 1990 sent a draft legislation to the legislature and then spent eleven years promoting the "Gender Equality in Employment Act." Finally, by 2001, the Bill passed by the Legislative Yuan and was put into place the next year. This was the first law in Taiwan initiated and drafted by women's groups. It put into place laws against sexual discrimination in the workplace, and several legal measures to promote gender equality (such as parental leave with non-transferable individual entitlements).

Amendment of Relatives Law - Changing of the Property System

4/9/2002 at the Legislative Yuan

The Awakening Foundation and Warm Life Taipei Association jointly put forward a new version of amendments regarding property rights between coupes, hoping to abolish the patriarchal inheritance system, revising the property system under marriage, allowing for the right to request fair distribution of the property of a couple to protect the rights and interests of economically disadvantaged divorced women.

A New Milestone for Gender Education - Gender Equity Education Act Reaches Third Reading

6/4/2004 at the Legislative Yuan

The Awakening Foundation and other organizations jointly formed a "Gender Equity Education Civic Promotion Alliance", demonstrating outside of the Legislative Yuan with red banners to celebrate the passage of the Gender Equity Education Act. This act was drafted by the Ministry of Education inviting scholars and experts to draft the law, which was sent to the legislature after being evaluated by the Executive Yuan. This was the first law sent to the legislature that imposed an obligation on schools and educational institutions to eliminate gender discrimination, recognize and protect students of diverse gender identities, and implement gender equality education.

Say Goodbye to 1,000 Years of Patriarchy, Looking Forward to the First Year of Sexual Equality

12/28/2011 at the Taiwan Women's Center

The Awakening Foundation, National Alliance of Taiwan Women’s Associations, and Taiwanese Feminist Scholars' Association on 2012's new year's day jointly made recommendations for the Executive Yuan's Gender Equality Committee on the same day that the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women was launched. This media conference titled "Say Goodbye to 1,000 Years of Patriarchy, Looking Forward to the First Year of Sexual Equality". This was a milestone that various groups in the women's movement have jointly reached in the course of Taiwan's democratization by introducing gender mainstreaming into public institutions through institutional transformation.

Associated Events
Intiaited the Anti-Sexual Harassment March in 1984
In 1987, protests erupted against the forced signing of affidavits at the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, requiring female new employees to declare their single status, refrain from pregnancy, and agree to resign upon reaching the age of 30.
In 1995, advocating for the abolishment of the joint property system for spouses by amendmenting the Family Law of the Civil Code
Holding a press conference titled “Giving the Right to Unmarried Women to be Mothers.”
Advocacy for the Decriminalization of Adultery in 2020