‘Women Empowerment Policy’ to ensure financial uplift

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Islamabad—‘National Women Empowerment Policy 2016’, to be unveiled on International Women Day on March 8, will help change the living standards of women through ensuring their financial empowerment.
Special Advisor to Prime Minister on Human Rights Barrister Zafarullah, in an interview with APP, said the Women Empowerment Policy would help ensure social rights of women, financial stability and extend maximum facilities to them at workplace.
He said Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif would unveil the policy on the upcoming Women Day and it would bring real empowerment of women. Head of the Parliamentary Committee on Internal Affairs, Maryam Aurangzeb said the policy consisting of various women friendly initiatives would be a unique and historical document.
She said the present government had envisioned to make women financially empowered through ensuring their fair representation in every sphere of life. She emphasized on involving women at decision making level, saying “merely imparting vocational training to them in different trades is not enough for their empowerment. Women’s real empowerment lies in their financial uplift.”
“Going through the draft of package, I feel that it addresses all the issues being faced by the working women including day-care centers, extension in maternity leave, increasing job quota, job security and others. The real impact of women empowerment cannot be visible unless they are financially empowered, she added.
The country, she said, had signed various women related conventions at international level which were essential to be complied. These conventions were also integrated in the upcoming women policy, she added. MNA (Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf) Nafeesa Inayatullah Khan Khattak said the Pakistan was a country where women needed opportunities to earn a respectful livelihood and shared the burden of their male counterparts.
She appreciated the passage of ‘Protection of Women against Violence Bill’ by Punjab Assembly and termed it a good step for the safety of women. MNA (Pakistan Muslim League-N) Maiza Hameed said the upcoming women package would introduce various initiatives for women across the country.
She said increasing job quota for women with relaxation in age limit and making the day-care centers mandatory in public and private departments were few of the initiatives. Other initiatives included loan scheme for women to start small business to make them self-sufficient, increasing women quota in scholarship schemes, youth programme and vocational training programmes. She said the centers to be established in Punjab under ‘Protection of Women against Violence Bill’ would also be extended to Islamabad in future. MNA (PML-N) Shaza Fatima Khawaja said introducing women protection bill was a major development and it would address the issues of domestic violence. Although the bill, she said, had received mixed comments from different sections of society but women had started registering complaints which was encouraging. Similarly, parliament, women caucus and young parliamentarian forum were also working actively for ensuring the rights of women, she added.—APP

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