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The importance of women in the Fishing Industry

Organized by the Marine Conservation and Climate Adaptation Project of the Fisheries Department and the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Second Annual Women in Fisheries Forum was held today in Belize City. It forms part of the Fisherfolk Month celebrations which is being held under the theme “Working Towards Zero Hunger with Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries”. The idea of the forum is to highlight the importance of women in the fishing industry and the role they play. Fisheries Administrator Beverly Wade spoke to Love News.

Beverly Wade Fisheries’ Administrator:  “In Belize we often look at Fishing as a male dominated activity but even though we do have Fisherfolk women that is directly involved in the actual taking the fish out of the sea. Women play a greater role in the Fisheries sector because when that fish comes in that is where women starts playing various roles along that entire valley chain and besides that also they play and important role when you look at the whole community and household resilience and stability which is important for any sector at the end of the day and so the last forum we taught was very successful event. For the first time it allowed us as women to be in a room to discuss fishing, to discuss their perspectives on fishing and to discuss some of the unique circumstances which surround their role and their ability to continue to perform that role and the second forum is tying now looking at the Sustainable Fisheries Guidelines that was put out by the Fish, Fisheries and Agriculture Organization of the UN (the FAO) to now look at those guidelines which we have formally adapted as a country to now see how we can implement the various provisions in that guidelines and those guidelines have a specific sector that speaks to gender equality, that speaks to the encouragement and the obligation of states really to put in these policies and systems which encourage the greater participation of women and also looks at how we can continue to support their role in fishing.”

About fifty women are registered as fishers in Belize.