Party Leader’s Weekly Message

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Celebrating our Belizean Women

8th March 2019

Hi everybody. March 8th is International Women’s Day — a day to celebrate remarkable women and girls everywhere, and to do all we can to defend the rights and dignity of everyone.

The United Nations has declared the theme for International Women’s Day 2019 as a time to “Think equal, build smart, and innovate for change.”  It is calling on the international community to focus on “innovative ways in which we can advance gender equality and the empowerment of women.”

While International Women’s Day should be a time to celebrate what progress we have made, look at those areas we must change and recognize those courageous Belizean women who have played a crucial role in the development of our nation.  This year we acknowledge this day with heavy hearts as we morn the loss of yet another of our young women 18 year old Joan Gabourel.  We join with all her friends and family in extending our heartfelt condolence to her family and the families of all our young women who died violent deaths this past year.

In the People’s United Party we have been working hard with our United Women’s Group to come up with policies and plans to help our women play an equal part in the decision making processes in our Party.

To achieve greater inclusion in leadership, more of our women and young girls need to get the best education possible because we believe education is the best way out of poverty.

Those barriers that prevent our girls from going to school and from graduating must come down so that they can get good jobs that will help them to climb the ladder to top positions in government and in the private sector.  In the PUP we are looking at education differently. Our education plan will ensure that all families are able to meet school fees for their daughters. Those barriers that prevent women and girls from not only achieving equality, but also feeling that they are equal must come down. We will do what we must to put a stop to all forms of gender bias.

Madam Liz and Jane Usher are PUP women we honour and celebrate.  But we also honour women like the late Signa York, the first woman Dean of St. John’s College Sixth Form.  Justice Michelle Arana one of the first female Supreme Court Judge.  We want a new generation of doctors like Lisa Johnson, the first woman surgeon to graduate from UWI medical school and we want successful businesswomen like Ninnette Martinez Kelly, Kay Menzies, Dahlia Castillo and others who are women entrepreneurs.

As the leader of the PUP I am working hard to ensure that Belizean women and girls are successful.  Our Party will make sure that our Belizean girls are not denied the chance to learn for we want women to contribute to our work in building a Belize that works for everyone.

Thanks, God bless and have a safe week.

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