Ahead of International Women’s Day this weekend, our Chancellor Dr Helen Pankhurst has been sharing her views:
The 8th of March is just one day of the year, but it is an important day. It is International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate global feminism, to look at how far we have come, to question where we are, to strive for better.
The theme this year is #EachforEqual and there are many discussions around the point that an equal world is an enabled world; that each one of us, women and men, can play our role; that we can all be a voice for change - challenging stereotypes, fighting bias and broadening perceptions.
I am incredibly proud to be the Chancellor of the University of Suffolk and in my short time in the role, I can see the steps the University is taking to promote equality for example encouraging female entrepreneurship and women to study and find work in traditionally male-dominated areas such as computer gaming and cybersecurity. Education is a powerful tool which can reinforce stereotypes but can also be at the forefront of countering them.
This 8th of March, as in previous years, I will be marking International Women’s Day by leading the March4Women event with CARE International in London. This year it will start with a rally at the Royal Festival Hall. This will be followed by a march to a finale in Parliament Square. Our focus in 2020 will be on climate change, building on the fact that women and girls across the world including Greta Thunberg and Hilda Nakabuye are making a stand against climate change. We want to honour them. We are also raising awareness of the fact that around the world, women and girls are often hardest hit by the impacts of the climate emergency, yet in official responses and institutions of power their voices and perspectives are rarely centre stage.
The 8th of March only comes along once a year.
Engage with it.
Your actions could be as simple as sending a tweet using the hashtag #EachforEqual, or discussing your roles in perpetuating or challenging gender and diversity with friends, family and colleagues.
Join an event taking place.
Together, each one of us can do something
#EachforEqual and I would argue #ReachforEqual.
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