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Driedger headed to South African conference

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Opposition deputy leader and MLA for Charleswood Myrna Driedger will be attending the 59th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference next week in Johannesburg, South Africa to partipate in discussions on ways to increase female representation in parliaments.

The international meeting, the CPA's biggest annual gathering, is being hosted by the Parliament of South Africa on Aug. 28-Sept. 6.

Driedger, who leaves Monday, will be representing the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Canadian Region. She is the chair of the CWP Canadian Region and is the vice-chair of CWP International. The CWP International is comprised of women Parliamentarians from 52 Commonwealth countries.

"It is the responsibility of all Parliamentarians to ensure we have real inclusion of women. Women's progress has stalled and the number of women in politics has barely changed in the last decade," Driedger said in a media statement.

She said women hold only about 20 per cent of all seats in parliaments globally. She added the United Nations states "30 per cent of female legislators is needed to ensure that public policy reflects the needs of women."

The CPA is an association of parliamentarians from Commonwealth countries who work together for democratic cooperation among parliaments and legislatures. There are 175 active CPA branches.

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