Let’s Stand United With Women Around the World

This is not the article we wanted to share today. We wanted to continue to celebrate our local women in business but somehow feel it is more appropriate to share the stories next week rather than this week. Events really have taken over. We stand united with all women around the world.

The week began on such a positive note – it was International Women’s Day. It was a day for celebrating the strength of women, the positive achievements and a clear view for the future.

I feel that the week has ended with so many questions and a sense of overwhelming sadness. It feels like the actions of a handful of truly, cruel men have tried to belittle and degrade our achievements and celebrations. While I, for one, do not believe all men are cruel or unable to treat women with respect or value them as equal. I do, however, feel that we need to stand up and question what is going on.

Our Thoughts are With Sarah and her Family

We can’t tell you how sad we all are at Essentially Local to hear about the murder of Sarah Everard by a policeman, someone we should feel we can trust. The news has shocked us on many levels. Only a few days before, the police sent officers to investigate this murderer. He apparently indecently exposed himself. Even more shocking is the fact that the police are now investigating these officers. The investigation apparently relates to the actions they took. Could different choices have led to a different outcome? 

Free Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

We can’t believe the latest news about the continued imprisonment of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. The shocking suggestions of horrific interrogation for crimes that she has always denied, blind-folded for up to 8-9 hours at a time. No window in her tiny cell and only a dirty mat with a thin blanket to sleep on. The press believes the allegations are more likely to be a political issue. Her physical and mental health is at risk and she is suffering every day. It’s unbearable to think about the impact it is having on her, her daughter and her husband.

Would we Intervene in Other Countries?

Now the British government is advising British citizens to leave Myanmar. Tensions are mounting in the military coup. A coup by military leaders who detained the female leader Aung San Suu Kyi. These leaders are charging her with crimes in an apparent attempt to silence her. A UN official has said the military has committed ‘crimes against humanity’ in order to stay in power. We saw catholic nun, Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng begging soldiers to shoot her not children. 

When Power Removes Reality

In many senses, these awful stories make the Meghan and Harry interview seem insignificant. That is until you think about the issues that the interview raises for women. This is not about the Royal family this is about how power impacts race and background. It raises the issues of how those in power have the ability to influence views and outcomes. This is about some aspects of the way media can treat people, and in particular, women. People are making decisions about how much they like or don’t like people based on how able another person is able to influence. Surely, this can’t be right. 

The Rights of All Women

There are basic fundamental rights that all women deserve. Let us not forget them, we stand united.

I am proud to be a woman, I am proud that other strong women are part of this business. I am proud to share the stories of amazing local women in business and who give time to volunteer.

The United Nations enshrined the fundamental human rights of all women nearly 70 years ago. The right to live free from violence, slavery and discrimation. Women’s rights are human rights. And as women, we all have rights. Education, owning property, being able to vote and earning a fair and equal wage are fundamental. Our voices are important and as such must be heard, listened to and acted upon.

When we say we don’t feel safe to walk down the streets, whatever country or community we live in, those in power must make changes. It’s not just about ‘Reclaiming our Streets’ it is about women feeling confident that they can trust those in power to do the right thing when something goes wrong.  

This week I am sad, I am disappointed for the women around me. I will not give up in the fight for equality and that my daugher’s voice and every other daughter’s voice in heard and respected.

We will continue to share our stories of our amazing local women next week because we will stand united with and for all women around the world.

Click to understand more about women’s rights

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