Women's Issues In Guyana

Women must demand better lives – health minister

Posted in Health Issues by wiig on March 15, 2008
Tags: , , ,

Stabroek News – March 14, 2008

Minister of Health Dr Leslie Ramsammy urged women to make “non-negotiable demands for better lives” in his address in Region Six on Friday in observance of International Women’s Day (IWD).

The ceremony was coordinated by the Regional Health Authority (RHA) in collaboration with the Women’s Affairs Bureau of Region Six. In his address Ramsammy acknowledged the sacrifices women have made in ensuring their rights are promoted. However, the minister said there were still too much “unequal access in the world.” In Guyana, he said many women and girls are deprived of an education and “as we celebrate we must take a humble step that we have much work to do…” He also said domestic violence and sexual abuse is still a problem in Guyana and called on religious leaders and teachers to deal with those issues in order to “Stamp it out! Stop it!”

Ramsammy said too women occupy a central and equal space in some respects and recognized the pioneering work of women in this country.

He made special mention of former President Janet Jagan who still focuses on women’s issues as well as Denise Dias who “started work on road safety after her child was mowed down on the road.” Ramsammy said too contributions from other women, including nurses must also be recognised. “We have much to celebrate in the world because of women like that.” At the same time the minister spoke out against the Myanmar government’s placing of Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest “because she dared to speak out” on issues affecting women and children.

Regional Education Officer Shafiran Bhajan gave an overview of the IWD along with Chief Executive Officer of Region Six Vishwa Mahadeo.

Stephanie Bowry recited a dramatic poem in the entertainment segment of the programme. A few women in religion were singled out for their contributions: Hazel Shepherd of the Guyana Police Force, Eileen James of the Regional Democratic Council, Sharda Persaud of the Guyanese Women in Development in Berbice, Terry Davis of the RHA and Tracy Leitch of DTV Channel 8. The programme was held at the New Amsterdam Hospital.


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