Increased Women’s Political Participation will benefit wider society says CPA Caribbean Regional Hot Topic Forum held at 62nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference 

Delegates and participants at the CPA Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forum have heard from a number of speakers on the need for increased women’s political participation for the benefit of wider society as they discussed the ‘hot topic’ of the region - ‘Seeking to Increase Women’s Political Participation’.

The CPA Regional Hot Topic Forum heard from a number of distinguished speakers including: Hon. Shirley Osborne MLA, Speaker of the Montserrat Legislative Assembly, Caribbean Regional Chair of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians and outgoing Vice Chairperson of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association; Hon. Kamla Persad-Bissessar MP, Leader of the Opposition in Trinidad and Tobago and former Prime Minister; Dr Josephine Ojiambo, Deputy Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Secretariat; Hon. Rayburn Blackmore MP, Minister of Immigration & National Security, Dominica; and Professor Verene Shepherd, Director of the Institute for Gender & Development Studies and Professor of Social History, University of the West Indies. The Forum was introduced by Ms Siobhan N. O’Garro and the moderator was Hon. Alix Boyd-Knights MHA, Speaker of the House of Assembly of Dominica.

The CPA Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forums bring together not only Commonwealth Parliamentarians, but also academics, students, civil society organisations and the wider Commonwealth family. 
To view video highlights of the CPA Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forum on ‘Seeking to Increase Women’s Political Participation’ please click below. The full session will also be available on the CPA Secretariat You Tube channel.

The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Mr Akbar Khan said: “Despite constituting half of the world’s population, women continue to be disproportionately represented in governance and at all levels of decision-making. The stark reality is that globally, there are 38 countries in which women account for less than 10% of Parliamentarians. It is vital that this burning or ‘hot topic’ issue is debated to strengthen the resolve, conviction; courage and determination of women to stand for public office and to make their voices heard through this CPA Regional Hot Topic Forum. This forum is the first in a two-part series for the Region; the second we envisage will be delivered in early 2017, where we will continue this interactive dialogue.” To read the CPA Secretary-General’s speech at the CPA Caribbean Regional Hot Topic Forum please click here.

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) launched the CPA Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forums in November 2016 in the CPA Asia Region to provide an opportunity for the CPA Membership and the wider community to engage with experts on a particular topic, which is of specific regional relevance. The Forum, held on the subject of ‘Seeking to Increase Women’s Political Participation’, is the second Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forum in the newly launched programme and the CPA Caribbean, Americas and Atlantic Region selected the topic.

The CPA Caribbean Regional ‘Hot Topic’ Forum was held in the margins of the 62nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference, held from 11-17 December 2016 in London, United Kingdom, hosted by the CPA Headquarters Secretariat. The main conference theme for 2016 at the annual event was: A Collaborative Commonwealth: Unity, Diversity and Common Challenges. The CPA Secretariat in partnership with the CPA Regions and Branches will be holding CPA Regional Hot Topic Forums across the nine CPA Regions with further forums planned in 2017.

Social Media: Twitter #CPAhottopic @CPA_Secretariat | | Online 
Published on Thursday 22 December 2016.


Notes to Editors

62nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference, 11-17 December 2016, London, United Kingdom
The Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference is the annual conference of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA). The 62nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference will take place from 11-17 December 2016 (inclusive of arrival and departure days) in London, United Kingdom, hosted the CPA Secretariat.

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), now in its 105th year with HM The Queen, Head of the Commonwealth as its Patron, exists to develop, promote and support Parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and to implement the enduring values of the Commonwealth. The CPA is an international community of over 180 Commonwealth Parliaments and Legislatures working together to deepen the Commonwealth’s commitment to the highest standards of democratic governance. Parliaments, their Members and officials learn from each other through CPA activities: Annual Commonwealth Parliamentary Conferences, Regional Conferences and other symposiums; Interparliamentary visits; Parliamentary Seminars and Workshops; Publications including The Parliamentarian, the Journal of Commonwealth Parliaments; and the Parliamentary Information and Reference Centre. 

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Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
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