Childcare facilities set up at DAP Congress

PENANG – The DAP has set up childcare facilities during its 16th Party Congress held in Penang in December 2012, marking yet another milestone in Malaysia’s struggle in ensuring and uplifting women’s rights. The childcare corner was set up mainly to allow delegates attending the Congress with children to participate fully in the meeting, a gesture applauded by many, particularly the women delegates.

The effort was one of many breakthroughs achieved by DAP and Pakatan Rakyat in advocating female participation not only in politics, but both in government and private workforces.

“This is in line with the DAP official stand which call for the government and private sector to provide this vital child care facilities for their employees,” comments DAP Organising Secretary, Teresa Kok.

Kok said this would enable mothers to continue joining the workforce, instead of sacrificing their career due to inadequate childcare system.

Lack of childcare facilities drives many Malaysian women to give up their jobs to spend more time parenting, a phenomenon perceived by women’s right advocates as an alarming waste of talent.

In November, Member of Parliament for Serdang, Teo Nie Ching, brought her four-month old baby to the Parliament lobby, to demand for crèches to be set up in federal and state government agencies.

Together with Teo was Member of Parliament for Lembah Pantai, Nurul Izzah Anwar, stressing the stand of Pakatan Rakyat MPs that urgent attention and assistance for the women workforce in Malaysia would be a definite step forward.

The childcare set up was one of the many features and programs held during the party congress, held on 15 to 16 December in Penang International Sports Arena, PISA. A launching of the second Ubah Dream Machine, ‘the Bersih Ubah’, alongside a special Ubah Concert was also taking place during the congress, joining the anticipation of what many saw as DAP’s ‘final showdown’ before the country’s 13th General Election.

Nearly 3, 000 delegates from all over the country joined the weekend-long party congress, held for the first time in Penang ever since 1991. – The Rocket

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