Tuesday 17th April, 2018 – Minister of Housing and Urban Renewal, the Hon. Maria Browne distinguished herself among a panel of esteemed women in politics in her first official conference as an elected Member of Parliament.
Mrs. Browne was invited to speak at the Commonwealth Women’s Forum in London, an event organised by the Commonwealth Women’s Parliamentarians (CWP) group that focuses on the inclusion of women in politics in the Commonwealth.
The distinguished panel comprised of female parliamentarians from Sierra Leone, Canada, South Africa and Zambia and was chaired by Helen Clark, the former Prime Minister of New Zealand and UNDP Administrator and patron. The session focused on the topic “Women’s political participation at all levels” in the Commonwealth and sought to consider practical strategies and actions to enable and support more women in positions where they can influence positive change in their communities.
Addressing the conference, Minister Bird-Browne underscored the importance of providing opportunities for women starting at an early age to prepare them for positions of leadership. She was responding to a question on policies to engage more women in elected politics.
Minister Browne noted that Antigua and Barbuda’s track record in empowering women in politics is commendable. The country currently has a majority of women in the Senate and can point to several women in high political and diplomatic offices. She also noted that she was one of two women currently serving in the Lower House of Parliament.
She is the youngest female parliamentarian in the Commonwealth.