News : Women’s Caucus: ‘Helpline to be Launched Soon’
Lahore, March 21, 2014 -- "A helpline will soon be launched where women can report the problems they face and get advice," said women caucus convener MPA Uzma Bukhari after the second meeting of the women caucus held on Thursday at the Punjab Assembly committee room.
Bukhari said caucus members would meet the inspector general of police on Friday (today) to discuss problems women face when registering FIRs.
She said the IG would be asked to nominate a focal person to liaise between the caucus and police on women’s issues.
District committees were formed to focus on problems of women in various areas.
Bukhari said the caucus would focus on implementation of laws to address gender-based discrimination and coordination with various government departments.
The government had announced the formation of a women parliamentarians caucus on March 4.
All 76 women parliamentarians are part of the general assembly of the caucus. It has a 12-member working council convened by MPA Uzma Bukhari. MPA Hina Pervaiz Butt is the secretary of the caucus and MPA Nausheen Hamid the treasurer.
Hamid said, "This is a leap forward for women empowerment as parliamentarians from all parties are working for welfare of women together. We will soon form committees on key issues like gender mainstreaming, health, education, social welfare and population welfare."
She said the caucus would act as a pressure group in the parliament.
Shirkat Gah Executive Director Farida Shaheed said, "The formation of the caucus is very welcome. This has been a long standing demand of women’s organisations. It can help bring about important initiatives and we look forward to seeing similar initiatives in the Punjab government."
Shirkat Gah law manager Hooria Hayat Khan said, "Caucuses provide a space for placing women’s issues effectively on the agenda.
They provide women parliamentarians a platform to act together on women’s issues and promote policies addressing socio-economic and political challenges faced by women."
MPA Hina Pervaiz Butt said, "We will soon table the domestic violence bill and continue working for women empowerment and to mitigate gender discrimination at various levels."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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