UN adviser calls for gender equality

Elizabeth Broderick, Marvi Memon agree to work for promotion of women’s rights


Our Correspondent August 08, 2017
Elizabeth Broderick, Marvi Memon agree to work for promotion of women’s rights. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: The United Nations Adviser on Gender Equality Elizabeth Broderick, while visiting Pakistan on Monday, urged men to promote gender equality in the workplace.

Broderick, Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEP) Global Co-Chair, was on a visit to Pakistan to engage business leaders on promoting gender equality in the workplace and convince influential male leaders to become advocates for gender equality, Radio Pakistan reported.

In a meeting, Broderick and Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) Chairperson Marvi Memon agreed to work together on gender equality, an official statement said.

According to the statement, Broderick, who also hold office of United Nations Global Compact and Special Advisor to Under-Secretary UN Women in a meeting with Memon on Monday discussed that there was a strong need to link women to speaking opportunities.

It would help raise their voices against discrimination and violence, they opined and stated to work together for the promotion of gender diverse environment, women empowerment and elimination of domestic and family violence.

Broderick is founder of the “Male Champions of Change” initiative. During the meeting Broderick said that gender equality is a significant societal and economic issues. “We need more decent powerful men to step up beside women in building a gender equal world,” she said.

If women were left out intentionally, they were excluded by the system unintentionally, Broderick said.

“We need to increase women representation at every forum for sustainable development. To start with, we must champion gender equality in our organisations if we want a visible change and increase of women in leadership positions,” she stated.

During the discussion on efforts in Pakistan for women empowerment, Memon informed that BISP, by providing financial assistance to 5.4 million most vulnerable households through women head of families, contributed directly to the women empowerment in the country.

She also mentioned that 50,000 BISP Beneficiary Committees (BBCs) across the country were is a real women empowerment tool.

Welcome to Pakistan

The Australian High Commissioner Margaret Adamson welcoming Broderick to Pakistan said that gender equality and women’s empowerment play vital role in economic development of a country.

According to the statement, Broderick, a former Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner (2007-15), was founder of the Male Champions of Change initiative, working with influential male leaders to become advocates for gender equality.

Adamson said that gender equality and women’s empowerment to play their rightful, equal role in economic development and society as a whole was a core element of Australia’s foreign policy and underpinned the Australian government’s development partnerships with Pakistan and globally.

“Australia’s aid investments in Pakistan are designed to ensure that women benefit from all our economic growth-related programmes. I am hopeful that Broderick’s visit and her engagement with private sector leaders will encourage the development of strategies and policies to maximise the participation of women throughout Pakistan’s economy,” Adamson added.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 8th, 2017.

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