Women's Issues In Guyana


Patient dies at Georgetown hospital after left unattended for hours

Posted in Health Issues by wiig on May 4, 2008
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Stabroek News – May 4, 2008

Pandemonium broke out at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPH) just before dark yesterday when a patient who had been deemed an emergency case and rushed there from the Leonora Cottage Hospital earlier in the day passed away, after she allegedly did not receive medical attention from the staff on duty.

Dead is 28-year-old Basmattie Balkarran, a mother of three children, of Ruby Backdam, Parika, East Bank Essequibo. Relatives and many others at the hospital loudly voiced their disapproval with the service at the institution and claimed that the woman had been diagnosed at Leonora hospital as being in a critical condition and in need of a higher level of treatment than it could provide.

Balkarran’s sisters and brothers wailed loudly at the hospital. They said their sister had been rushed to Georgetown and arrived at the GPH at 10 am, but had not been attended to until they started complaining and pleading with the nurses to take her into the emergency room some time after 4 pm. The woman died around 6 last evening.   (more…)

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British lends more support to ‘Stamp it Out’ with IT system

Posted in Crimes against Women by wiig on May 4, 2008
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Stabroek News – May 4, 2008

British High Commissioner Fraser Wheeler said his country remains supportive of the Guyana government in its bid to “implement a comprehensive policy framework to tackle crime and security in Guyana once and for all.”

He underscored this support at the handing over of an online communication system to the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security. The communication system is designed to help build capacity in the ‘Stamp it Out’ campaign to stop violence against women.

This system falls under a three-phase programme, a press release from the British High Commission stated. The first was the installation of online communication within the ministry’s main office; and the second being installed currently caters for the inclusion of subsidiary offices around Georgetown. The third phase will be to provide online links to the ministry’s offices in the other administrative regions.   (more…)

How much will we allow?

Posted in Culture & Society by wiig on May 4, 2008
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Guyana Chronicle – May 4, 2008
by Rev. Kwame Gilbert

I MUST applaud the very bold and decisive step taken by the Minister of Home Affairs in blacklisting two entertainers, whose performance/ lyrics are considered not to be in keeping with the moral ethos of our country.

I had begun to question, in recent times, the very sanity of some of these so called entertainers. The filth that is spewed out, into the airwaves, in the name of music and entertainment is simply unbelievable. What is worse is that there seems to be an insatiable appetite for this tripe in our society. Our people are so caught up in this sexually perverting, lewd genre of “music” that it has spawned a generation of lawless, reckless, shameless people. Not only are the lyrics repulsive, but the music videos are absolutely appalling. We see young women gyrating, exposing their private parts to the camera, in a shameless, despicable manner.

Regrettably, in this process of social evolution, this planet has over time metamorphosed into an almost unrecognizable state, morally and spiritually speaking. With these various forms of transmutation, we have seen the emergence of a culture of sexual liberation. (more…)

Bajan Breakthrough – 25 years of legal abortions

Posted in Health Issues,Legislation by wiig on April 29, 2008
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Stabroek News – April 29, 2008
(Reprinted from T&T Review – March 3, 2008 )
By Sanka Price

As a politician there are some issues that no matter what decision you make, you are certain to anger a significant segment of the population.

One such issue is the legalisation of abortion.

You’re damned if you support it, and you damn others to suffering if you don’t.

Abortion is an issue that has strong religious, medical, and social arguments for and against it. And each side thinks they are correct.

Those who favour the right of a woman to decide if she should have an abortion are “pro-choice”. They see their goal as the empowerment of women, and the need to stop the death, disability, disfigurement and debilitating conditions scores of women endure from botched, ‘back street’ abortions.

Equally strong views are presented by those who maintain that once there is conception the emphasis must be on preserving the life of the foetus. They argue that although a woman has a right over her own body, she has no medical or legal right over the foetus because it is a separate individual with its own DNA, blood supply, and maybe, even a different blood type. (more…)

Steps to cushion food prices welcome, but women’s groups want VAT reduced

Posted in Culture & Society by wiig on April 29, 2008
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Stabroek News – April 29, 2008

Two women’s organisations said yesterday that while they welcomed the efforts by government to cushion the increasing prices of food, they still believe the steps taken so far, fall short of what is needed and are convinced that a reduction in VAT could go a far way.

Red Thread and Grassroots Women Across Race held a press conference to address the effects of the escalation in food prices on the survival of families and on the burden of the work that women carry
On May 1 the groups will hold a peaceful picketing exercise at the corner of Regent and Cummings streets, during which they hope to give a louder collective voice to their cries and demands.

“Our families cannot survive the daily increase in the price of food, prices of electricity and the high price of water,” they said.

They noted that on May Day there would be the traditional marches and speeches, but “will as usual not acknowledge or even consider our unwaged labour as caregivers in our homes and communities and through our religious bodies, whether we are mothers or not.”

The women feel that the speeches would not acknowledge women’s labour although it is “our unwaged caring labour that is holding up our families.”   (more…)

Minister Manickchand urges single parents to get registered

Posted in Culture & Society by wiig on April 29, 2008
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Guyana Chronicle – April 29, 2008

MINISTER of Human Services and Social Security, Ms. Priya Manickchand yesterday urged all single parents to get registered for the Single Parent Fund over a three-week period.

“The registration process to register all single parents was launched and we are going to attempt to get all single parents registered on a national single parent register,” she explained at a press conference.

Information collected from the registration process will help to plan effectively what interventions would be taken to assist single parent families.

She said this is going to be an ongoing programme since government realises the hardships single parents face.   (more…)

Man tricked woman seeking US visa with promise of marriage

Posted in Crimes against Women by wiig on April 29, 2008
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– court hears
Stabroek News – April 29, 2008

A man was placed on a total of $195,000 bail yesterday when he appeared on charges of forgery in a US visa scam before Magistrate Melissa Robertson-Ogle in the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court.

Carlton Jackman, 57, allegedly took $100,000 from Maureen Persaud telling her that he would provide her with a US visa. The woman said she was supposed to marry Jackman to get to the United States but he tricked her instead.

He was slapped with charges of intent to defraud, uttering a forged document, that is a letter purported to be from the US Embassy Visa Section, and uttering the forged letter to Persaud to get the money from her.

The Lyng Street, Charlestown man pleaded not guilty and was placed on $65,000 bail for each charge. He will return to court on May 19.

A housewife’s dilemma – coping with the increasing cost of living

Posted in Culture & Society,Gender Equality by wiig on April 28, 2008
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Kaieteur News – April 28, 2008
By Rustom Seegopaul

“Coducta, yuh gun stop me by de corna comin’ nah,” calls out Saleema Khan.

As she climbs out of the minibus onto the street, she thinks ahead of what she has to buy at the market – a mental list of the things she needs to buy for the house and for her family. These are the things that will have to take them through the coming week, and the list is already in her head.

As Saleema ventures into the market and hears the calls of vendors echoing through the passageways of the Bourda Market, she tightens her grip on her handbag, knowing that she holds the sustenance of her family for the coming week. She is careful with this money. With the price of just about everything going up, she knows she has to spend it wisely and that she cannot afford to be robbed.

She slowly walks from stall to stall, checking each stall’s prices before she makes a purchase. She is a member of the poorer class of Guyana’s people. Like most of the others within her demography, Saleema has a spouse with a low-income job, children to feed, and a house to run.

Prices of everything all around her are rising; from gasoline to rice, prices are higher.    (more…)

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