Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the majority of our women. The Coalition is not at all satisfied with the quality of programmes and services currently in place for the social and economic development of our women especially in rural areas. They still do not have sufficient knowledge about the laws and their rights regarding domestic violence and gender equality, that is, equal pay for equal work, freedom from discrimination and sexual harassment.
Whatever national policy is in existence does not seem to be working. The deaths and permanent maiming of many women at the hands of spouses and even male family members have increased exponentially over the past decade and so has the incidence of maternal deaths. Our young women in the city and the hinterland are falling victim in increasing numbers to Trafficking in Persons. From all appearances, there does not appear to be any concerted administrative strategy to effectively address this gaping hole in the fabric of this society. This is the 21st Century and Guyana is lagging far behind the rest of the developed and developing world.
It is generally accepted in this 21st Century that women the world over are taking the driver’s seat. Through the Women and Youth arms, APNU+AFC intends to institute a comprehensive programme to achieve full empowerment by providing functional facilities for education (general and vocational), specialized skills training, and facilitating financial assistance for small business development.
On the social spectrum, the APNU+AFC Coalition intends to go into full attack mode to confront the incredibly high rates of suicide and domestic violence against women and children in urban and rural communities with the involvement of religious and community leaders. We are determined to change the economic and social paradigms in this nation.