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Fiji Young Women’s Forum Anticipates November Elections 2018

Fiji Young Women’s Forum Anticipates November Elections 2018

Women are underrepresented at all levels of decision making in Fiji, including formal and informal governance processes. As a result, women including diverse young women do not have equal influence over policy decisions that affect our lives. While the country prepares itself for the General Elections in November 14th, it is critical that the voices of diverse young women are visible throughout Fiji’s democratisation progression.

“Fiji Young Women’s Forum (FYWF) would like to acknowledge the confirmation of 56 female candidates for the 2018 Fiji national elections. We extend our congratulations to the 6 young women candidates under 30 years of age and look forward to engaging in their leadership journey,” commented Diverse Voices and Action for Equality (DIVA).

However, FYWF acknowledges the lack of representation of diverse young women in decision making at the national level and anticipates this will increase in the future. It is critical to recognise that with continuous and effective support, the self-determination of all young women regarding the formation of an accountable and transparent government that will in turn help to advance all diverse young women's social, economic and political statuses.

Furthermore young women have to realise the significance of active political participation and exercise their rights in community and national levels to enact change and influence legislative reforms. With awareness through civic education, young women are better informed of their constitutional rights and are able to confidently assert themselves in their respective communities.

“As diverse young women we face multiple forms of discriminations because of our age, sex gender, psycho social disability etc. FYWF envisions a future where we have the freedom to express our views, opinions and political beliefs in safety and with dignity with no fear of retribution or violence. Whilst at the same time our bodily autonomy is respected and celebrated and young women are recognised as leaders who are impacting and influencing change.” This was emphasised by the Emerging Leaders Forum Alumni(ELFA) .

Effective, equal and safe political participation of women and young women is vital for a strengthened democracy promoting gender equality and women’s human rights.

“As community media, we recognise the need for young women to access key information and communication platforms. To actively participate in civic dialogue, decision making and lead shifts in public and political opinion therefore we firmly reiterate for continued investment in young women’s empowerment for increased participation,” says femLINKPACIFIC.

Fiji Young Women's Forum (FYWF) is a space for diverse young women leaders to articulate their needs, rights and perspectives on Fiji’s political transition and strategise for moving Fiji forward. The past 5 forums saw young women leaders continuing to make visible their opinions particularly in the national election process.

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