Safety audit workshop hosted to create safer spaces for women

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In aims of creating safe spaces for women and girls, through sustainable housing, the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) is hosting a two-day Women’s Safety Audit (WSA) Workshop.

The workshop, which falls under the Adequate Housing and Urban Accessibility Programme (AHUAP), began at the Parfait Harmony Primary School, West Bank Demerara, on Saturday.

Susan Rodrigues Minister within The Ministry of Housing and Water stated that the findings of the workshop will help to guide infrastructure design and the construction of community facilities in the areas that fall under AHUAP, within West Bank Demerara. These are: West Minster, Onderneeming, Recht-Door-Zee, Lust-en-Rust and Parfait Harmony.

The Minister further stated that the safety of women and girls is imperative to the government and in keeping with their manifesto commitment for women empowerment.

Susan Rodrigues, Minister within the Ministry of Housing and Water

“In order for that to happen we have to come to you the people to guide that process and help us to shape the programme in such a way that it brings real, tangible benefits and enhancement to your lives,” said the Minister.

CH&PA’s Environmental and Social Safeguards Coordinator, Mr. Sunil Gopaul, noted that $US27 million ($5.4 billion) has been allotted through the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to execute the program in several areas across the country. He stated that the project scope includes construction of core homes, and infrastructure works such as upgrading of roads and drainage systems and installation of street lights.

Participants in the workshop are given the platform to detail the experiences of women in urban public spaces, and how these experiences affect their daily lives. The contrast and similarities of these experiences to men within the same areas are also being examined. The workshop is being led by Deputy Director of the Community Development Department, Mrs. Donnel Bess-Bascom and other staff members.

Some of the participants during the workshop

As part of the workshop, the participants will also conduct a WSA walk, along with CH&PA officials in specific areas to assess these spaces and recommend strategies for improvement.

The targeted participants and stakeholders included members of the Guyana Police Force, Regional Democratic Council of Region Three: Malgre Tout/Meer-Zorgen, Neighborhood Democratic Councils, community leaders, faith-based organisations and women and girls of differing social and economic spheres. The workshop will continue on Sunday, July 4, 2021. [Extracted and modified from the Department of Public Information]

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