Dear Editor, please allow me space to contribute to this article.
Gender is a now a familiar issue globally and a cross-cutting one. It is indeed a sensitive issue in the PICs considering the strong traditional/cultural context. Compared to the Western world and perspective, I think in the PICs, specifically for Solomon Islands, there should be a re-thinking around how gender as an issue is addressed.
Lately, emphasis and approaches have been on advocating for the explicit recognition of the role of women and their right in our society. Though success and work done by responsible stakeholders up to now must be applauded, little improvement has been obvious (as the article stated). I think, in a context as ours (Solomon Islands) emphasis should be made more on educating men to understand the role, value, and to appreciate the contribution of women in the society, rather than the other way around.
This approach can work as it builds on the strength of our male dominant society, and can be easily executed without unexpected barriers, compared to the approach currently taken. I believe the problem in our society is not gender, but it is the incapability of men.
Once men are targeted by these gender initiatives and programs with the aim of improving their understanding the roles and responsibilities of women in the household, then gender may not be an issue in our society, regardless of traditional norms or practices.
The "real" gender issue
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this letter are those of Daykin and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Solomon Times Online.
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