Haitian Women Still Waiting for a Seat at the Table

“It is necessary that the Haitian government takes action to implement the minimum quota of 30 percent and seeks to obtain full equality in terms of women’s participation, achieving 50 percent in all elected and appointed positions, in both the upper and lower houses,” IPS quotes a UN Women’s representative in Haiti in an article about women's representation in national politics in Mali.

More than two years ago, Haiti’s parliament approved a landmark amendment to the country’s 1987 constitution to ensure that women fill at least 30 percent of elected and appointed positions at the national level, the article explains.

But despite some advancements, implementation of the law has stalled. In 2010, according to the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Haiti ranked as one of the bottom countries in terms of women’s participation in politics and decision-making processes.

Today, out of 23 ministries in the current Martelly-Lamothe administration (2011-2016), 10 are headed by women. The lower house of the Haitian Parliament has five women deputies out of a total of 99, and in the Senate, they are practically invisible, with only one female senator, Edmonde Supplice Beauzile.

According to the article, one of the major obstacles for women is the structural discrimination associated with the patriarchal organisation of society and limited access to formal education.

“There are many cultural barriers and gender stereotypes that determine the common perception of politics as a male affair,” UN Women’s Kabisayi told IPS.


To read the entire articl on IPSnews.net, please click here.

Photo by TrUsTiEr.