ISLAMABAD (DNA)- Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS), Islamabad organized a Webinar on “COVID-19 Chronicles: A Women Perspective”. The aim of the Webinar was to analyze how COVID-19 is impacting women and to allow the respective authorities to respond effectively to their vulnerabilities.
The session was commenced with the opening remarks by Ms. Mehreen Gul, Director CGSS. She welcomed all the speakers and participants to the Webinar. She highlighted the significant role of women in our society and how women have continued to play a constructive role in nation building.
Ms. Kaana Aidarkul,Chairperson,Kyrgyz Association of Women in the Security Sector, Kyrgyz Republic highlighted the situation of women in Kyrgyzstan during COVID-19. She stressed on the central role of women in combating the pandemic by mentioning the address of the Head of UN, António Guterres, “women’s leadership and contribution can be used as a central element in ensuring resilience and recovery”. She stated that women should be assigned the role of leaders with equal representation and equal decision-making authority.
Dr Rafia Rafique,Director Institute of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore stated that as the pandemic of COVID-19 continues to spread in Pakistan, it is necessary to recognize immediate and long term psychological needs of women. Furthermore, Women are wedged at home and exposed to the abusers for longer periods of time with limited options to access essential services. Clinical management and psycho-social support was harder to access during the lockdown for women already facing mental health challenges.
Ms. KempirbayevaDilyara, First secretary, Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Pakistanstressed on the importance of discussing women issues during the pandemic. She stated that women from one hand carries the cradle and from the other hand carries the world. She also mentioned how the Kazakh Government is taking different measures to ensure the safety of its citizens and assisting the people to cope with the pandemic.
Ms. Faiza Sheikh,Lawyer in the Jurisdictionof England & Wales,Pakistan stated that women make up more than half of the frontline workers whether it is education or health, women play a central role. A framework must be made to facilitate these women. She highlighted that contribution of female healthcare workers, doctors, nurses and paramedics who are serving tirelessly at this crucial time.
Ms. NigarJavanshirzade, Project manager “Chamomile” Azerbaijani Diaspora Women’s Network, Azerbaijanhighlighted ways to help women during COVID-19 lockdown. She asked family members to play an active role in managing the household chores to reduce workload of women.She discussed how the Azerbaijan is assisting its people in reducing tax burden on entrepreneurs, giving financial assistance and providing direct social support to them.
Ms. Wang Qianting, Senior Correspondent, China Media Group, Beijing, China stated that women from service industry have suffered the most. In China, supportive policies have been introduced by the Government for people who have lost their jobs. Moreover, the Central Government of China is working efficiently for the people who are facing economic challenges.
Ms. DilnozaOdilbekova,Association of Business Women Uzbekistandiscussed the impacts of COVID-19 on women in business sector. She stated that how Uzbekistan has been helping women entrepreneurs to cope with economic problems being faced by women.
Ms. Ramma Shahid,Founder Beti,Media &Advocacy Expert, Pakistan stated that during COVID, a lot of women have lost their jobs especially those with smaller businesses. Women are having a hard time so our organization is providing moral and legal support to women who need assistance. In Pakistan, various organizations are working under the provincial and federal Government to catter the needs of women across Pakistan.
The Webinar was attended by 50 participants from a cross section of society and was moderated by Ms. Minahil Afridi, Research Assistant, CGSS.