Important deets from the article:
1. An action plan is being drawn up by the Women, Family & Community Ministry to ensure that at least 30% of decision-making positions will be held by women in the country.
2. The plan is in the final stages & will be submitted to the Cabinet for approval. It is a gender equality program.
3. The plan covers 6 main sectors: the public sector, judiciary, legislative bodies comprising the Parliament, state executive councils & local councils, Federal ministries & agencies, statutory bodies, & universities.
4. The ministry's sec-gen Tan Sri Faizah Md Tahir said that in the corporate sectors, the number of women holding top posts is still low, but in the public sector, 22% of decision-making posts are held by women. The ministry will not impose any form of penalty should they fail to meet the 30% mark, instead they will use "moral persuasion".
5. The ministry will also consider giving gender awareness awards/certificates to companies which are successful in reaching the 30% mark. Various factors contribute to the lack of women holding top posts, including the stigma that a woman should be a man's helper, & the lack of female role models.
As nice as it is to know that women are looking out for other women out there, the problem has yet to be identified. The true problem lies in the 5th deet, the key word stigma. Introducing this quota policy will only enforce the stigma that women are the weaker sex. Women need to prove themselves to be as capable as any man & breaking the stigma requires women to do so without handouts. If this policy is implemented, the stigma about women is further strengthened & we will go nowhere if women are still gonna be considered as 2nd class citizens.
Statistics show that women are catching up without help from the government:
*Click here for a pdf file detailing statistics for the yr 2007
Plus we have plenty of female role models to look up to:
Wong Mew Choo, national badminton female singles player
Tan Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Bank Negara Governor
Datuk Michelle Yeoh, actress & movie producer
Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz, Kuala Kangsar MP
Dato' Faridah Merican, co-founder of the Actors Studio
So see, girls, it's really up to yourself if you want to be something different. I don't think we need handouts to prove our worth, you can only achieve the latter by discarding the former. The last thing we need is to acknowledge that handouts is something we need to identify ourselves as an important part of Malaysia.