National Gender Policy being finalised
Georgetown, GINA, June 23, 2016
The Ministry of Social Protection is in the process of signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and UN Women, which will be providing support to finalise Guyana’s first National Gender Policy.
This policy will steer the mainstreaming of gender issues in the public sector and offer guidance to the private sector. It will provide for greater opportunities to secure women’s independence, to study, to work and to excel.
During a recent interview with the Government Information Agency (GINA), Minister of Social Protection Volda Lawrence explained that UNICEF and the UN women will be providing technical support to ensure that a comprehensive policy is realised.
Minister Lawrence noted that consultations will also be conducted in hinterland communities throughout the country, to ensure that the indigenous people have an input and are fully educated on the policy.
“We want to have an interaction and have the views of our citizenry in the hinterland locations. So we are about to start the rounds in terms of getting people involved, and sharing with them our proposals,” Minister Lawrence said.
Consultations on the policy started in 2015, targeting persons on the coastland. The Ministry also merged the men’s and women’s affairs bureaus into one unit to address issues affecting both genders.
Additionally, in August 2015, a National Conference on Gender and Development Policy was held under the theme, “Equal rights for all-Be good to People.” Issues including gender in governance, in productive resources and employment, in security and in information and communication technology were discussed, as well as gender-based violence.
The University of Guyana in collaboration with the Women and Gender Equality Commission also launched the first Gender Studies Unit (GSU) as part of the National Conference on Gender and Development Policy conference.