Bahraini women’s strides highlighted at round-table in France
Paris, The Supreme Council for Women (SCW) has organised, in cooperation with the Bahrain-Frence Friendship Group at the French National Assembly, a high-level round-table themed The Latest Legislative Developments in Support of Women's Participation and Advancement.
Held at the headquarters of the French Parliament, the round-table aimed to highlight Bahrain's efforts to develop legislation and laws that support Bahraini women and their role as full-fledged partners in enhancing the progress of their nation.
SCW Secretary-General, Hala Al-Ansari, expressed hope that the event would contribute to opening up wider horizons for consultations and exchange of expertise between Bahrain and France in the field of legislative work that ensures women's rights.
She pointed out that Bahrain's experience in women's advancement is characterised by its keenness to deal with the challenges surrounding the process, which, she said, made the SCW seek to create a culture that supports and facilitates balance between men and women in all fields, as well as to establish a national system aimed at integrating women's needs in development.
In this regard, she highlighted the establishment of a national committee, led by Her Royal Highness Princess Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa, Wife of HM the King and the SCW President, which put forward a National Model for integrating Bahraini women's needs in the state's action plans, 10 year ago.
The Model, she said, is based on four main themes, including the development of women-supporting policies, legislation and systems, preparing and implementing budgets that respond to women's needs, measuring the impact of the spending on women-oriented programmes and services, developing methods to manage the acquired knowledge in the field of women, raising the capacities of the equal opportunities' staff and measuring the impact of the implementation through activating monitoring tools to evaluate the performance of state departments in achieving equality in distributing opportunities between the two genders.
Al-Ansari stressed the influential role played by the Kingdom's Legislative Branch in contributing to activating the Model through using the legislative and supervisory tools to ensure the achievement of fairness and equal opportunities in legislation and government's action plans while preparing women-responsive budgets.
The SCW secretary-general pointed out that the National Model for Integrating Women's Needs in Development is an innovative system to monitor the application of the equal opportunities and balance between men and women, noting that the tools of the system include a national report to measure the effectiveness of state departments in applying gender balance policies and initiatives, adopting innovative practices that support women's needs and sustainability of their advancement, and a comprehensive observatory of gender balance indicators and data, which ensures the monitoring and analysis of women's status and measurement of their competitiveness rates locally and internationally.
She affirmed that His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa's approval of the system and the government's keenness to put in place all its implementation requirements have contributed to its successful application.
Concluding her statement, Al-Ansari said that Bahrain will continue its efforts to be a think-tank in the field of women empowerment and advancement, and to increase its quality contributions at the international level, citing the kingdom's keenness to honour its international commitments, access to executive agencies and specialised committees and promotion of its successful national practices, such as the Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Global Award for Women's Empowerment which was recently adopted by UN Women, after its application for ten years at the national level.
After that, the SCW's legal advisor, Dr. Waleed Al-Masri, gave a brief presentation about Bahrain's efforts in achieving gender balance, shedding light on the constitutional guarantees to implement the equal opportunities principle, as well as on the steps taken by the country to consolidate family stability.
Then, President of the Bahrain-France Friendship Group at the French National Assembly, MP Beatrice Piron, said that Bahrain's rapid developments in the field of women prove the seriousness of its comprehensive reforms in this regard, within the framework of a political and institutional openness in which the SCW plays a major role in translating the reforms into important aspects related to women's status, which, she said, resulted in pioneering strides through women's success in reaching decision-making posts or through the huge number of laws and legislation that protect the family and women, in particular.
The attendees, including members of the French Senate and National Assembly and officials, also spoke during the round-table, and lauded Bahraini women's contributions to building their nation since the beginning of the 20th century.
They also expressed appreciation of the national efforts being exerted to enhance Bahrain's progress in various fields.
Source: Bahrain News Agency