Social Protection Minister, Amna Ally, reaffirmed the Government’s commitment to ensure gender equality. She said the Government will continue to collaborate to facilitate progression and empowerment of women entrepreneurs.The Minister made this statement at the Women in Business Expo at the Pegasus Hotel, over the weekend.Govt committed to gender equality – AllyAlly explained that women who are managing to juggle a hectic family life, academic studies and managing their own businesses are inspirations to families friends, employees and younger women.“Therefore, supporting these women is pivotal not only by allowing women to realise their dream and securing the future of their businesses but by also contributing in making, the economic power house it is capable of becoming,” Ally said.The Minister of Social Protection noted that research has proven that cultural and institutional barriers still exist within societies which impede women from achieving their full potential in terms of gender equality. She added that in this regard, efforts must intensify to ensure that no talent, idea or effort of women is wasted because they come from a woman rather than a man.The minister noted that women rights group around the globe have constantly highlighted that if women are healthy and educated, their family will thrive. If they have a chance to work and earn as the men of their families, they will thrive and when families thrive, communities and nations will thrive.Further, the Minister pointed out that many of the products displayed at the exposition are of high quality. She lauded the Sonia Noel for Creative Arts Foundation and Women Association for Sustainable Development for the initiative and urged participants to continue to support the objective.“The work that groups such as the Sonia Noel Foundation are doing gives confidence that we can achieve sustainable development. Women are not the only ones who will benefit. The women led businesses existing today are fundamental to the success of long-term economic plans,” Minister Ally concluded.Meanwhile, Executive Director and founder of Sonia Noel for Creative Arts Foundation, Sonia Noel, said when the Women in Business Expo started last year she saw the possibility of it becoming a success. She added that it is a success but without relationships, it would not have been possible.The Women in Business Expo is a platform for women entrepreneurs to develop their business and business ideas. There were over 50 women entrepreneurs from rural and urban communities who showcased their products ranging from cuisine, handicraft, and fashion to real estate services among others.
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’Schwarzenegger has endorsed the sentencing commission as he prepares to ask lawmakers next month to approve a building plan that will provide more than 35,000 additional prison beds, Tilton said. Since 1977, California has used what is called a determinate sentencing system in which terms for incarceration are relatively fixed. Judges have some leeway based on the nature of the crime and the criminal’s history. Lawmakers and voters have added longer sentences since then through measures such as the “three strikes, you’re out” law for repeat offenders. In November, California voters approved tougher penalties for sex offenders. “We’ve been adding to it piecemeal…,” Tilton said. “Maybe it’s time to back up and take a look at it.” He said the composition of the commission and the authority it would have to change state law have yet to be determined. It should include experts from academia and law enforcement who would consider sentences, parole terms and basing a period of incarceration on each criminal’s risk to society, Tilton said. SACRAMENTO – California’s corrections secretary said Friday that the state will create a commission to review sentencing guidelines for felons, a potential key step in Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s efforts to relieve prison crowding. Reform could give judges and parole officers greater discretion and lead to some offenders being released sooner than under current law, Secretary James Tilton told The Associated Press. The proposal comes five days after a federal judge gave Schwarzenegger a June deadline to ease crowding in the nation’s largest state prison system, where more than 173,000 inmates live in space designed for fewer than 100,000. Failure to do so could lead the federal courts to order remedies that include early release of inmates. The administration has not decided whether Schwarzenegger will create the commission himself or seek the Legislature’s approval, he said. During his re-election campaign this year, Schwarzenegger opposed changes to the “three strikes” law and supported Proposition 83, the so-called Jessica’s Law. The voter-approved initiative increases sentences and parole terms for violent and habitual sex offenders. The governor now hopes to convince Democrats who control the state Legislature to support a massive building program. Tilton said it would include adding 16,000 beds at existing prisons and satisfying federal courts by building about a half dozen units to house 10,000 sick and mentally ill inmates. In addition, about 4,500 female and 5,000 male inmates would be transferred to smaller community-based prisons. Lawmakers adjourned last summer without acting on an earlier version of Schwarzenegger’s building plan, which he introduced as part of a special legislative session. Key Democrats said the state should focus on parole and sentencing reform instead of building more cells. To begin easing crowding immediately, the administration has signed contracts to move 2,260 inmates to private prisons in Arizona, Indiana, Oklahoma and Tennessee. The union representing prison guards is challenging the transfers in court, and Tilton said he is having trouble finding inmates who will volunteer to be shipped out of state. About 600 are ready to be transferred, after 80 were sent to Tennessee.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!