This past summer, I covered the 7th G(irls)20 Summit. As the Official Global Correspondent I learnt about the G20 and how it operates. I worked with high potential young women from around the world to develop and formulate a detailed communiqué, which was presented to G20 Leaders before they met in China.
Saudi Arabia stands out as a country where entrepreneurship is well-perceived and is seen as a worthy career choice for women. This type of advancements will not only be an important factor in the social advancement of women, but will more broadly result in potential economic development for the country.
China intended this summit be a break from the past, a substance discussion on global issues, with a focus on oft-neglected international development. This would indeed have been very timely, energizing support for Agenda 2030 and a big plus for China's leadership. However, it never seemed to happen.
In México, extraordinary wealth and heart-breaking poverty exist side by side. It is a land of harsh contradictions -- skyscrapers and wood houses, modern-day Internet and illiteracy. Years ago, when I used to think about this, I always asked myself; with all our diverse natural resources and hard-working labor force, why are we in this situation?
Being a female worker in Indonesia is not easy. Juggling life as a mother, wife, child, and worker, turns your days into endlessly tiring routines. Although Indonesian women have been living like this for so long, it is time that the suffering ends and new initiatives arise which both empower women while still giving them a chance to spend more time with their families. One solution would be to encourage more and more women to become entrepreneurs.
The reality is that in Toronto, as in most police services across the continent, the vast majority of serving police officers are exceptional public servants. The bad news is that reality is entirely irrelevant. People don't form judgments or base their decisions and actions on reality. They base them on their perceptions. And a fast-growing segment of society in Toronto, in Chicago, in New York City, in Ferguson, in cities and towns across North America, perceive their police services to be acting for their own benefit -- not society's.
What can G20 leaders do to economically engage and empower girls and women? Put simply, they need to invest in the re-structuring of the educational, business and political systems which are set up to inhibit female empowerment. Education is the essential catalyst for this process. Education is essential if a girl is to become independent.
Continuing legal differences between the entitlements of men and women in economies across the globe has a negative impact on female work force participation. Some say that women should suck it up, and do a different job. Why? If men are entitled to pursue any career they like, why shouldn't women have the same opportunities?
On November 15 and 16, the Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau will be part of the G20 Leaders' Summit in Antalya, Turkey. G20 leaders will surely discuss urgent issues such the migrant crisis, the conflict in Syria and climate change. There is another crisis that isn't receiving much media attention: It is global youth unemployment.
The 1.8 billion young people on our planet have the potential to not only enlarge the global economy, but also to mainstream sustainable growth. G20 governments must work to empower youth to build skills and achieve mastery such that their labour will be fulfilling and will add value to their communities.