Today is International Women’s Day where we celebrate the achievements of women throughout history and across nations.
While the list of achievements is very long and distinguished and comprised of many notable names from Rosa Parks to Mother Theresa; there are others such as Marie Curie whose achievements in radioactivity helped launched the cures for fighting cancer. There is also Ada Lovelace, a gifted mathematician, who is considered to be the first computer programmer.
Here in the Cayman Islands, the achievements of women are immeasurable. Our women were the backbone of economic activity and progress when our fathers and grandfathers went to sea. Today, that legacy continues both in the public and private sectors as we have seen women breakdown barriers and glass ceilings to become Chief Officers and CEOs, while still playing their role as nurturers and teachers to our children.
As many of you may be aware, this year we are celebrating 60 years of our first written Constitution. Earlier this year, at our Heroes Day celebration, we recognized the achievements of those 358 women who signed the petition to give women the right to vote. Because those women of yesterday were able: today more women are enabled.
Ironically, this year, the theme for International Women's Day is "An equal world is an enabled world" and in the spirit of those women who laid the foundation for women in the Cayman Islands to participate in our political and social activities, we recognize the recent public achievements and the role that women played in the CPR Group both during the campaign, and in the courts. We also recognize the role that women played and continue to play, in holding others to account with the #metoo and #sheissupported movements. Those recent movements have created an environment for soul searching and honest conversations within our islands on the rights and value of women within our society.
This celebration of International Women's Day was started to help end gender discrimination against women, and to ensure that they gain full and equal participation in global development.
The members of the Official Opposition join the billions around the world that are fighting to make this a reality.
As we pay tribute to all the women who have ever been in a situation where they have been made to feel less than their worth; the Scriptures remind us, that women are more valuable than rubies.
So, our message to all of you on this International Woman’s Day is, to stay strong in your convictions against gender discrimination and gender violence. Speak up and don’t accept silence, tolerance for discrimination or inaction from the very people you have given the responsibility to ensure that the challenges faced by our mothers and grandmothers are not faced by our daughters and granddaughters.
One Love. One Cayman.