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Anne Claire Dufay – UNICEF Country Rep speaking at the event

WOMEN AND girls who suffer sexual and gender based violence can now have access to improve essential services with the launch of a new document.

The ‘Essential Services Package for Women and Girls Subject to Violence’ forms part of the United Nations (UN) agencies’ partnership to provide greater access to a coordinated set of essential and quality multi-sectoral services for all women and girls who have experienced gender based violence.

It seeks to address the issue of fragmented services often provided to victims of such violence by identifying the essential services to be provided by the health, social services, police and the justice sectors.

It also spells out the guidelines for the coordination process and mechanisms for service delivery of the core elements of each essential service to ensure high quality service for women and girls experiencing violence.

The document which was launched in Accra by the UN system was produced with support of UNFPA’s West and Central Africa Regional Office (WCARO).

Anne Claire Dufay, UNICEF Country Representative and UN Resident Coordinator in Ghana, who launched the document, and opened a three-day workshop for stakeholders, stressed the importance of effective coordination in the provision of essential services to victims of gender and sexual based violence.

She said “it is very important to coordinate effectively to ensure that we have a solid protections system for women, for girls, for children in place with good data, good referral mechanism and good case management.”

She again noted that the SDGs cannot be attained if the issue of gender and sexual based violence is not addressed thus urging the relevant stakeholders to make the implementations of the provisions of the document a priority.

Deputy UNFPA Country Representative Ghana, Erica Goldson, in her remarks said the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development explicitly targets the end of discrimination and elimination of all forms of violence and harmful practices against all women and girls.

However, she said despite the many commitments to eliminate discrimination against women and girls, it remains pervasive in every society and country with victims often lacking access for safety and protection.

Therefore this document she said see to it that every victim of violence have prompt access to the full range of essential services, including sexual and reproductive health services, support to ensure mental and physical health, well-being, and safety, and access to justice.

“This means that survivors of physical and sexual violence must have rapid access to a health clinic that can and will administer emergency medical care and counseling; they must have access to the police to file a criminal report, and a respectful, informed reception,” she noted.

She added that “and they must have access to medical practitioners who can conduct a forensic examination within 72 hours of the attack, and who they are able to consult within their cultural requirements.”

The UNFPA Deputy Country Representative further observed that the provision of the essential services would include a safe place for a woman and her children, if she is experiencing domestic violence, or is a victim of trafficking.

“In all cases, it is essential to place women’s full human rights at the centre of any response. These services not only provide immediate support and recovery, they will help us to stop impunity,” she stressed.

 

 

 

SOURCE: DAILYGUIDEAFRICA

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Gender Issues

Feminism is a scam – US political activist Candace Owens

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VIDEO:

Candace Owens in a speech at the Turning Point USA’s Young Women’s Leadership Summit on June 6 gave the audience of young women a brief background on her past as a liberal Democrat. It was a college course — Feminism 101 — that made her realize that feminism was not for her.

The “BLEXIT” founder argued that feminism — once a good thing — has been hijacked by the left.

 

Watch the video below;

“What the left is really good at doing is hijacking a term that once meant something and pretending that it’s still the same thing when, in fact, it’s not,” Owens said.

“Really, if you want to see something toxic, tell a feminist — who says they support every idea a woman has — tell a feminist that you’re not a feminist and see what happens. See the way that you get treated,” she continued.

“I can’t think of women that are nastier and meaner than the ones who exist under these pussy hats, right?” she added.

Owens pivoted to her distaste for the #MeToo movement and the backlash she received for speaking against it. However, she said the truth eventually came out in the form of the Kavanaugh hearings.

“Suddenly, everybody woke up and they realized that this was not about empowering women,” she said. “This was not a movement that was really about giving people a voice who have struggled in their past. It was about getting power and getting it by any means necessary.”

She said the “bitter” and “angry” left can’t understand the fact that men and women cannot be separated and blasted the left for telling women otherwise.

She told the crowd about an upsetting comment she read online after having a conversation on the dangers of feminism with Allie Beth Stuckey. The comment was from a 55-year-old woman who said she fell for the modern day feminist lies, leaving her with no children and forcing her to take medication regularly.

“If there’s anything I could go back and do, I would’ve warned myself against the scam of feminism,” the woman wrote.

Owens brought up a number of far-left feminist icons in Hollywood, including Lena Dunham, Miley Cyrus, and Chelsea Handler.

“I believe these voices like Lena Dunham, and Miley Cyrus, and Chelsea Handler are convincing women against themselves, telling women, ‘You don’t need a man. You don’t need anyone. You should want to do everything by yourself. And if you do aspire to that — if you aspire toward nature — then something’s wrong with you,’” Owens said.

She told the crowd to “pause” and ask the following question: “Who is the most extreme feminist you know today?”

Owens named Handler, Dunham, Sarah Silverman, and Alyssa Milano as some that came to mind.

“Ask yourself a very simple question: Do you think those women are happy?” she asked. “There’s no chance that they’re happy.”

“That is why I believe feminism is a scam,” she continued. “It’s not about uplifting women. It’s about tearing women down.”Candace Owens kicked off Turning Point USA’s Young Women’s Leadership Summit Thursday afternoon and blasted the “scam” of feminism during a passionate speech.

Candace Owens gave the audience of young women a brief background on her past as a liberal Democrat. It was a college course — Feminism 101 — that made her realize that feminism was not for her.

The “BLEXIT” founder argued that feminism — once a good thing — has been hijacked by the left.

“What the left is really good at doing is hijacking a term that once meant something and pretending that it’s still the same thing when, in fact, it’s not,” Owens said.

“Really, if you want to see something toxic, tell a feminist — who says they support every idea a woman has — tell a feminist that you’re not a feminist and see what happens. See the way that you get treated,” she continued.

“I can’t think of women that are nastier and meaner than the ones who exist under these pussy hats, right?” she added.

Owens pivoted to her distaste for the #MeToo movement and the backlash she received for speaking against it. However, she said the truth eventually came out in the form of the Kavanaugh hearings.

“Suddenly, everybody woke up and they realized that this was not about empowering women,” she said. “This was not a movement that was really about giving people a voice who have struggled in their past. It was about getting power and getting it by any means necessary.”

She said the “bitter” and “angry” left can’t understand the fact that men and women cannot be separated and blasted the left for telling women otherwise.

She told the crowd about an upsetting comment she read online after having a conversation on the dangers of feminism with Allie Beth Stuckey. The comment was from a 55-year-old woman who said she fell for the modern day feminist lies, leaving her with no children and forcing her to take medication regularly.

“If there’s anything I could go back and do, I would’ve warned myself against the scam of feminism,” the woman wrote.

Owens brought up a number of far-left feminist icons in Hollywood, including Lena Dunham, Miley Cyrus, and Chelsea Handler.

“I believe these voices like Lena Dunham, and Miley Cyrus, and Chelsea Handler are convincing women against themselves, telling women, ‘You don’t need a man. You don’t need anyone. You should want to do everything by yourself. And if you do aspire to that — if you aspire toward nature — then something’s wrong with you,’” Owens said.

She told the crowd to “pause” and ask the following question: “Who is the most extreme feminist you know today?”

Owens named Handler, Dunham, Sarah Silverman, and Alyssa Milano as some that came to mind.

“Ask yourself a very simple question: Do you think those women are happy?” she asked. “There’s no chance that they’re happy.”

“That is why I believe feminism is a scam,” she continued. “It’s not about uplifting women. It’s about tearing women down.”

She is known for her pro-Trump activism and her criticism of Black Lives Matter and of the Democratic Party.

 

 

 

 

SOURCE: www.breitbart.com

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Gender Issues

UNFPA Pursues End to Obstetric Festula

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With an estimated 1,300 fistula cases occurring each year in Ghana, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has called for stronger government commitment in addressing the issue.

The UN agency said the country’s health system needed to do more to reach the 1,200 fistula cases that are left untreated each year in order to eliminate the suffering of affected persons.

Deputy UNFPA Country Representative, Erika Goldson, speaking at a press briefing in Accra to mark the 2019 International Day to End Obstetric Fistula themed “Fistula is a human rights violation – end it now!,” said the persistence of obstetric fistula in the country and the world at large was a reflection of the broader health inequalities and healthcare system constraints.

She said the condition which affected two million women in 55 low income countries, is caused by injuries to the birth canal of a women or girl after prolonged and obstructed labour, resulting in the leakage of urine or faeces or both, through the vagina.

The condition leaves humiliating effects on its sufferers as the victims are often subjected to isolation, shame and stigmatization.

Ms. Goldson said conditions like the lack of access to family planning, skilled attendance at birth and emergency obstetric care, in addition to the violation of the rights of women and girls, contributed to the poor treatment of affected persons.

“We must also promote education and broader human rights; foster community participation in finding solutions, such as the active involvement of men, adolescents and youth, as well as seeking the help of fistula survivors as advocates,” she added.

The UNFPA together with its global partners had since 2003 been engaged in the long battle against obstetric fistula.

In Ghana, the UNFPA together with the Ghana Health Service (GHS), launched a National Obstetric Fistula Prevention and Management Strategy in 2017 and also the 100 in 100 initiative as part of the implementation strategy.

Professor Anyetei T. Lassey, the Chairman of the National Obstetric Fistula Task Force, said the average cost of fistula treatment including surgery and post-operative care, was approximately GH¢ 3,200, and appealed to institutions to support the initiative financially to repair more cases and put smiles back on the faces of the victims.

Dr. Patrick Kuma Aboagye, the Director of the Family Health Division, GHS, said the development of obstetric fistula was directly linked to one of the major causes of maternal and infant mortality, as majority of women often lose their babies.

 

 

 

SOURCE: DAILYGUIDEAFRICA

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Gender Issues

President appoint more women

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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has appointed more women than any other president in our nation’s history. And, his actions can be seen where it matters most, empowering the girl child through education to be able to compete on equal terms, at least, by preparing them for the future.

President Akufo-Addo’s recent comment that there hasn’t been enough dynamism in the gender parity agenda has generated a lot of public debate.

What appears missing in the debate, however, is whether or not what he is saying is the reality.

Some have taken issue with the President’s position on the matter and have suggested that President Akufo-Addo ought to have repeated the latest buzzword of feminists: of ‘women must be amplified.”

Whether the debate in the western world is one about “amplification” rather than “empowerment” is a debate that may not necessarily put in a classroom the Ghanaian girl child whose parents have to choose between her and her brother as to which of the two should their parents spend the money they don’t have to put through secondary education.

 

President Akufo-Addo chose the path of the hard truth which may sound unpopular to feminists but remains a fact; that in the gender parity journey, we could do with a lot more dynamism where it matters most.

As the President postulated, talking up the subject and campaigning for same are all laudable.

However, one critical area remains unattended to; getting enough women around the decision making table to participate in decision making at the highest of levels.

At least three key cabinet positions of his government are held by women: attorney general, foreign affairs and local government.

He made the point that if women don’t for instance put themselves up to be elected as candidates then it is difficult to have a majority of them as ministers because at least half of his ministers per the Constitution must come from the legislature.

Political parties in Ghana go as far as reducing the filing fees for women to encourage greater participation.

This is what the President describes as women getting hold of the levers of power and decision making.

President Akufo-Addo has always been a firm believer that the path to effecting any change lies in getting hold of Political power.

That is why for decades he has been involved in the hurly burly of Politics seeking power to bring about the change he desires.

This has come at great cost to him over the years. But he believes that without power, only marginal impact can be made.

He therefore argues that advocates must also channel their energies towards getting women to take hold of the levers of power and decision making.

This is where he argues the dynamism required has not been enough.

Friedrich Ebert Stiftung in partnership with the Institute of Local Government Studies has recently published an analysis titled “A Gender Analysis of Political Appointments in Ghana since Independence”, which makes interesting reading. In the 2016 election for example only 137 females contested parliamentary positions out of the 1258 candidates for the 275 seats.

The 52% of women in Ghana in the opinion of Mr. President must count for something here. Again out of the 137 only 35 won seats.

In 2012 only 133 women contested as against 1332 men.

The analysis suggest that on the average, women representation in leadership positions in Ghana has hovered around 12% across various administrations since Independence.

The President’s argument is that there needs to be more dynamism here in getting more women to put themselves up for office where it matters most.

On his Part, Akufo-Addo has done a lot to amplify and empower women.

He continues to believe in pushing women forward as much as possible.

His argument is that what is needed next is to get increased dynamism that gets more women to step forward even when not pushed.

It is an open secret that in 2008 his first choice for running mate was a woman. In the 2012 NPP parliamentary primaries, he argued that sitting female MPs should be protected while lowering costs for women aspirants.

On his watch, the gender question has significantly improved.

He has appointed the first female Chief of Staff, ensured that the positions of Chief Justice and cabinet secretary are filled by competent women. 36!of his MMDCEs as well as several top executives of State-owned Enterprises are now women.

Records show that President Akufo-Addo has appointed the highest number of women as Ministers in the 4th Republic.

PRESIDENT 1ST TERM 2ND TERM
Jerry John Rawlings 15% 13.58%
John Agyekum Kufuor 11.43% 11.43%
John Evans Atta Mills 18.35%  –
John Dramamni Mahama 17.86%  –
Nana Akufo-Addo 19.24%  –

Source: Kojo Oppong Nkrumah

President Akufo-Addo achieved this despite a constitutional provision that requires appointments of 50‰ of Ministers from Parliament with few female representations.

Akufo-Addo’s call for increased dynamism will add a new layer to what he has done personally already and therefore must be supported.

President Akufo-Addo is the first to set up a specific fund to support women entrepreneurs with disability.

Work is ongoing on an Affirmative action bill as well as key amendments to the Interstate Succession Law to further empower women and eliminate discrimination against them.

He is not against empowerment and not against amplification.
He more than many has demonstrated his commitment to both.

His call is to add a third and perhaps most important layer ;Increased dynamism by women themselves so that that 52% statistic will count where it matters most.

 

 

 

 

 

SOURCE: https://www.graphic.com.gh/news/politics/president-akufo-addo-s-commitment-to-women-empowerment-not-in-doubt-oppong-nkrumah.html

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