The Women Parliamentarian’s Caucus discussed a potential Bill to ensure rights and protection of Sri Lankan women as well as gender equality.

The meeting was headed by Dr. Sudarshini Fernandopulle.

Accordingly, the proposals to the Bill includes establishing an independent commission titled the National Women’s Commission through an Act of Parliament which would provide leadership on legal and policy reform, monitor implementation of laws and women’s rights and gender equality, and make recommendations to Parliament for intervention on issues of gender equity and equality.

Furthermore, the proposals also looks into the establishment of an independent Ombudswoman on gender issues under the office of the Ombudsperson to investigate and provide redress for injustices against individual women in the public sector, to legislate for the purpose of expediting cases of violence against women and girls, incorporating internal monitoring mechanisms within the relevant line ministries to ensure that Security Forces and Police adhere to prohibitions of torture, rape and other human right violations etc.

While emphasising the importance of such Bill, the Caucus’ Chair and members agreed that the proposals must be looked into with a deeper understanding. The Caucus decided to meet on 9 September to discuss particulars to before recommendations are made.

MPs Rohini Wijeratne, Geetha Kumarasinghe, Dr. Harini Amarasuriya,
Dr. Seetha Arambepola, Diana Gamage, Thalatha Athukorala and Chief of Staff and Deputy Secretary General and the Secretary to the Caucus Kushani Rohanadeera were present at the meeting.