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Women's Rights

When Ministers’ children go to school, other children will follow suit – Women & Media Collective

Noting the socio-economic implications of the prevailing situation in the country on working women, a women’s rights organisation today called for government ministers to send their children to school in order to convince parents that schools are indeed safe, as claimed by the state.

In a press conference held in Colombo today (15), the Women & Media Collective criticised the Government’s approach to the conversation around the safety of schools, arguing that the Minister of Education and Minister of Defence must first send their children to school in order to send the right message.

“The official statement is that everything is safe and fine, but people can see that the Ministers are not sending their children to school. So everyone is going to assume that the schools are not safe,” a spokesperson for the Collective said.

The Collective further said that the misconception a majority seems to hold that all Muslims are terrorists is also problematic.

“Many parents are reluctant to send their children to school if Muslim children are going to the same school. That is the subtext of what is going on,” said one speaker.

Activist Subha Wijesiriwardena pointed out that the problem of children not going to school has led to a number of other socio-economic problems as well.

“Many working women find it difficult to manage the situation. They cannot leave their children at home; nor can they take the children to work and ninety per cent of the burden is on mothers,” she said.