St Lucia: On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Prime Minister of St Lucia Allen Chastanet, his mother Judy Chastanet, and wife Raquel DuBoulay-Chastanet extend their wishes the women worldwide.
PM Chastanet’s mother, Judy, stated, “In celebration of International Women’s Day, I would like to take the opportunity to appreciate the women for their strength in this prime time; women are the backbone of the world; as a young girl growing up, I have to be prepared for any challenge, as a mother, it was necessary to raise my son to be kind and show the leadership quality. Above all, he treats everybody with respect and especially women.”
Furthermore, Judy Chastanet added, “of course, I am a proud mother of now that he has become prime minister, but I am equally proud that he is grown up to be the man who demonstrates all the qualities to make an effort in the development of women.”
Raquel DuBoulay-Chastanet also expressed her views on International Women’s Day via a video.
Happy International Women’s Day❤️ pic.twitter.com/9Q5NH3G48e
— Allen M. Chastanet (@allenmchastanet) March 8, 2021
On the other hand, PM Chastanet added, I know that conditions are still not right for a full-blown celebration because of the pandemic, but we must take time to salute all our nation’s women.
We must recognize the immense contribution our women have made in the fight against Covid-19 under being on the frontlines as doctors, administrators, nurses, caregivers, emergency personnel, and so many more; risking their lives in the service of their fellowmen and women. To our teachers, who continue to educate our children throughout all of this and all the women who continue to serve this nation in these difficult times, Saint Lucia owes an eternal debt of gratitude that can never be re-paid entirely.
It is interesting to note that this year’s International Women’s Day theme is “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”. This is another reminder that women have not lost sight of their goals in demanding justice, equality, and respect even in these difficult times.
These are ideals which my government fully endorses, and we will do all in our power to ensure they are achieved.
Over the past four years, my regime has consistently advanced women’s causes with appointments and promotions, especially in the public service.
We now have more women in our parliament and our cabinet than ever before. Women are being chosen for leadership positions in both the public and private sectors and are tearing down the obstacles that stand in their way with great success.
As a government, we are committed to further advancing the causes of women at all levels of society to develop a gender-balanced community based on equality.
Even as we make advances, we recognize the issues of domestic violence and violence against women generally, sexual harassment, primarily targeted at single mothers, and discrimination in the workplace are just some of the areas where not enough progress has been made. Still, I assure you today that the government is working on these issues, and we must act as a society by intolerant of violence against women.
Over the past year, the COVID pandemic has impacted the jobs of many Saint Lucian women. Still, it has also brought out the creativity and a sense of purpose of many who have created income-earning opportunities for themselves, many with government agencies’ assistance. I remain confident that when we overcome the virus—and we will do so—we will begin to reverse the losses we have suffered.
These are challenging times, and while we have to consider our situation’s gravity, we have to resolve that COVID 19 will not keep us back. I remain optimistic about this, and I ask all of you, especially our women, to share that view. We will survive this because we must.
Our vaccination program against the virus is currently in progress, and I urge all women to avail themselves of the opportunity.