Women are taking up more prominent leadership roles in governance and law enforcement and men need to get used to it. That is the view expressed by Minister of National Security Stuart Young in his address at a National Workshop for the Strengthening of Gender Equality in Counterdrug Law Enforcement Agencies at the Police Training Academy yesterday.
"Yes, focus on strengthening on gender equality and very soon it is going to be us men who are going to have to be fighting for the equality because we are being left behind and that's not a bad thing we just need to be able to cope with it. As women play a greater role and well-deserved role across the board in leadership throughout Trinidad and Tobago," he said.
Young pointed out that T&T already had several women in prominent positions, including three major leadership roles with President Paula-Mae Weekes, Senate President Christine Kangaloo, House Speaker Bridgid Annisette-George and Leader of Government Business Camille Robinson Regis. He said similar strides are being made in national security offices and law enforcement.
"The Executive Director of our National Security Council is a woman. The head of our special branch in Trinidad and Tobago, again a female leader. Recently the Defence Force launched an initiative to push and to engender and to broaden the leadership and also the amount of female participation in the Defence Force," he said.
Rafael Parada, chief of the Supply Reduction Unit of the Inter American Drug Abuse Control Commission, said the involvement of women in the fight against the drug trade was important as recent trends suggested women had become more involved in the criminal acts as well.
"After analysing current trends associated with the drug problem, in this participants emphasised that the direct involvement of women has increased exponentially. Women have increased their participation in drug cartels, even taking on high-level positions," said Parada.
He said it was important that women get involved in drug policy discussions to aid in the war against drugs.
The three-day workshop will end on Thursday.
- by Peter Christopher