Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat Staff Pledge for Gender Parity

Nuku'alofa Times:

Tuesday, 8th March 2016

As the world celebrates International Women’s Day today, staff of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) are pledging to be role models for promoting gender equality.

Supporting the global campaign to make a ‘Pledge for Parity’, the Forum Secretariat staff have undertaken to encourage and support greater opportunity for women and girls within their communities.

The pledges included, advocating for greater participation of women with the Secretariat, recognizing the full capability of every woman and girl in their life, supporting gender balanced leadership, backing diverse teams within the workplace, and promoting flexible work environments that enable participation for all.

“International Women’s Day is an important opportunity to reflect on what we have achieved for the women and girls in the Pacific region. Pacific Leaders are committed to ending violence against women, promoting women in decision making, providing access to health and education, and the economic empowerment of women. Parity is at the heart of Pacific regionalism. When there is equality there are better outcomes for everyone,” said PIFS Secretary General, Dame Meg Taylor.

“Beyond the policies and programmes designed to tackle the issues, I believe that change starts from within ourselves – we need to change our actions and rethink our perspectives if we are to really address this issue as a region. I am pleased that the Forum Secretariat has taken these steps to progress gender equality.”

The pledges made by staff reflect the principals of the Secretariat’s gender policy and contribute to the ongoing discussion within the organization about creating more opportunities for women.

PIFS Men Commit advocate Alfred Schuster said, “Women in our communities must be fully supported by the men in our communities. The men of the Forum Secretariat recognize and respect this and, as a result, we are constantly working to nurture an environment where pledges like these have deep meaning and are acted on by staff, their families and through them the broader community.”

Read story: Nuku'alofa Times

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