“Plan Sierra Leone has a policy on gender equality” says Country Director
The Country Director of Plan Sierra Leone, Mr. Augustine Allieu, has intimated to this press that his institution has a policy on gender equality. In an exclusive interview with him in his Kinghaman Road office past Wednesday 5th Mr. Allieu revealed that Plan Sierra Leone’s vision is a worldwide one in which all children, both girls and boys are expected to realize their full potential in societies that respect people’s rights and dignity, adding that this commitment to gender equality is based on international standards established by the United Nation’s Conventions on the Rights of a Child (CRC) and on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).
He pointed that by signing the CRC more than 20 years ago all Governments agreed to the principle that girls and boys have the same rights, noting that there has been some progress towards gender equality, but in all parts of the world many injustices are still prevalent.
He however stressed that girls and boys have the same rights, but they are not able to realize them to the same degree, as girls and women have lower social status than boys and men. The Country Director cited that girls are severely affected by poverty and also have less power to make decisions for themselves and for their family adding that “they are less likely to be sent to school, and when they are sick they are less likely to receive good medical care”.
He further stated that, the origin of these rights violations are gender-based discrimination, gender stereotyping and an unequal distribution of power between women and men, girls and boys, from infancy to adulthood.
“Our women folks also contribute to high death rates and to low educational achievement among children and these are some of the reasons why children are not sufficiently protected from injury and harm”, the Country Director lamented, and continued that “they affect the abilities of families to earn a decent living, and they are one of the barriers that prevent children and young people from participating in family and community decisions.”
He maintained that Plan Sierra Leone believes that gender equality is central to achieving their vision for change.
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