Large-scale measures to support women identified
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On March 1, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev chaired a videoconference on further improving the system of support for women and further strengthening their status in society.
In the history of the Uzbek people, along with great scientists and generals, many great women gave life and inspired our ancestors to do great deeds. And today, the women of Uzbekistan selflessly work for the benefit of society in various regions and districts. In recent years, several laws, decrees and resolutions have been adopted to improve their lives and ensure their rights and interests.
In 2021, 2 trillion UZS of loans and subsidies were allocated for more than 200 thousand projects under women’s entrepreneurship programs, 320 thousand women received permanent jobs. 190 thousand women have been trained in professions, more than 4 thousand have been provided with funds for initial payment for the purchase of housing.
2 thousand girls were admitted to higher education institutions based on a special grant. As a result, women made up 60 percent of the students who entered universities last year.
Since 2020, the “women’s notebook” system has been introduced. About 900 thousand women included in it have been provided with socio-economic, medical, legal and psychological assistance.
The next urgent tasks in this direction were discussed at the meeting.
More than 630 thousand women are registered in the “women’s notebook”, 200 thousand of whom are unemployed. Unfortunately, there are cases of crime among women, as well as domestic violence and harassment against them.
The Head of the state stated that the role and influence of mahalla activists, the public and representatives of the older generation in solving these problems are not felt.
“Our prosperous life today and our bright future depend on women. If we want our people to be satisfied with us, first of all, we must create decent living conditions for our mothers and sisters. If the mother is happy, then the family is happy if the family is happy, then society is satisfied”, Shavkat Mirziyoyev said.
This goal is defined as one of the most important directions in the development strategy of Uzbekistan. For the systematic implementation of the tasks in the sphere in the context of mahallas, the State Committee for Family and Women Affairs has been established today by Presidential Decree.
The Chairperson of the Committee will also hold the position of a Deputy Prime Minister and a member of the Senate. The heads of regional, district and city branches of the Committee will also hold the position of deputy hokims.
The Committee will manage the Women’s Support Fund and Women’s Notebook Fund. The positions of deputy chairperson for women and families in 9309 mahallas of the country will also be transferred to the Committee system, and the position of a women’s activist will be introduced in each mahalla.
“Now there will be a system in every district that will listen to women. And then there will be objective figures on my table about what women need and where, how the issues of their education and upbringing of children are”, the Head of the state said.
Before that, the Ministry of Mahalla and Family Support dealt with women’s issues. In connection with the creation of a separate committee, it was reorganized into the Ministry of Support for Mahalla and Older Generation.
It is planned to create a new system in this area as well. This task will be assigned directly to hokims, the corresponding position of deputy hokim will be abolished. The Chairperson of mahalla will ensure the coordinated activities of the assistant to the hokim, a youth leader and a women’s activist.
In addition, the activities of People’s Reception Offices will be organized at the level of mahallas.
At the meeting, the Head of the state focused on the issues of social protection of women. It was instructed to introduce an order according to which, from September 1, 2022, women working in the private sector will be paid maternity benefits by the state. It was noted that 200 billion UZS will be allocated from the budget this year, and 1.7 trillion UZS in 2023.
Touching upon the issue of improving the living conditions of women, the President said:
– Once it was not possible to give women preferential housing, there was no legal basis, no money.
At the meeting, it was decided to allocate at least 40 percent of mortgage subsidies to women.
Specific measures will also be taken to strengthen their health. In particular, 6 thousand women will receive high-tech medical care this year. Women with disabilities will be provided with rehabilitation facilities. Cancer screening will be organized for 3 million women. Instructions were also given on vaccinating girls, providing women of fertile age with medicines and vitamins free of charge.
Getting a good education and acquiring a profession is one of the issues that the President pays priority attention to. At the meeting, historic decisions were made to expand women’s access to education.
In particular, a program to support women’s education for 2022-2026 will be developed. It will provide for the creation of a Textile University in the capital, which will be created based on a public-private partnership. Technical schools of the university with the participation of cotton-textile and wool clusters will also be opened at places.
From the new academic year, for the first time, the issuance of interest-free loans for 7 years will be established to pay for education contracts. 1 trillion 800 billion UZS will be allocated to banks this year, and in the next five years – 8 trillion UZS.
Another news: starting from the next academic year, the state will compensate from the budget the number of contracts of girls studying for a master’s degree. Contracts for training students from low-income families, as well as orphaned students, will be paid by local budgets.
At least 300 quota places for admission to doctoral studies will be allocated annually to significantly increase the proportion of women among scientists.
Instructions were given on the creation of Qualification Assessment Centers at mono centers and universities, training women in professions.
It is planned to adopt a Business Women Program for 2022-2024. 8 trillion UZS will be allocated for its implementation. Entrepreneurship courses will be opened for women and preferential loans will be provided.
The Head of the state stressed the need for supporting entrepreneurs who employ unemployed women. Numerous tax benefits and trade preferences for such business entities have been announced.
The issues of strengthening the legal protection of women were also discussed. Today, women who have been subjected to domestic violence are given special protection for 30 days. However, there is a gap in this system.
In this regard, the protection of women from harassment and violence will now be provided by the court, and special protection will be established for up to one year.
Strengthening the family and increasing the responsibility of parents in raising children is also an urgent issue.
The President proposed to create the Oqila Ayollar Movement, consisting of respected and educated women.
“This movement should become the “conscience of mahalla”. Because it is impossible to build an enlightened society without enlightened mothers”, Shavkat Mirziyoyev said.
The officials were given instructions on the organization and control over the implementation of the activities defined at the meeting. Active women, heads of industries and regions addressed the event.