Women Of The PLP #ChooseToChallenge

March 8, 2021

The PLP said they celebrate International Women’s Day, noting that “PLP women have been trailblazers, creating an enormously proud legacy for our island.”

A spokesperson said, “The Bermuda Progressive Labour Party has a long history of strong women in leadership roles, working hard on behalf of their party and their community. We celebrate these women on International Women’s Day and every day for their sacrifices and contributions, not only to the PLP, but to the community and to all women. From our party’s beginning, PLP women have been trailblazers, creating an enormously proud legacy for our island.

IWD Bermuda March 7 2021

“The indomitable barrier breaker, Grand Dame of Politics, the late Honourable Dame Lois Browne-Evans literally put Bermuda on the map when she became the first woman in the western hemisphere to lead a major political party.

“On that glorious ‘Date with Destiny’, November 9, 1998, it was the tenacious female PLP leader, the Honourable Dame Jennifer Smith, JP, MP who led the PLP to its first election victory.

“The Honourable Paula Cox JP, MP continued the Party’s legacy of women leading from the front when she became Premier in October 2010.

“These three women not only paved the way for others to follow, they shared their knowledge so that other women moved forward in greatness, assisting more women along the way to also be trailblazers

“The PLP honours lady leaders Dr. Barbara Ball, JP, MP, and former Ministers the Honourable Renee Webb JP, MP, the Honourable Patrice Minors, JP, MP, the Honourable Neletha Butterfield JP, MP.

“These women took up the mantle to work for our country on numerous fronts, because they cared for Bermuda and wanted to see our island thrive. That dedication, sacrifice and commitment deserve accolades as there were still men in society who felt that politics was not a place for women.

“We will be forever in debt to these women warriors for passing on the torch to our present PLP women leaders. Today, the number of women leaders has risen significantly and they have taken on some of the most severe challenges that our island has ever faced.

“The Honourable Minister Kim Wilson, JP, MP, the current Health Minister, is competently managing the coronavirus pandemic while overseeing healthcare reform.

“The Honourable Minister Renee Ming, JP, MP, a mentee of the Honourable Dame Jennifer Smith, the current Minister of National Security, -continues to successfully manage our island’s compliance with public health and security protocols during this pandemic.

“The Honourable Minister Kathy Simmons, JP, MP, our Attorney General, is leading the efforts to modernize Bermuda’s laws to provide the opportunities and protections our country needs now and into the future.

“The Honourable Minister Tinee Furbert, JP, MP, Minister of Social Development and Seniors,works wholeheartedly to improve and expand the care for our children, seniors and persons with disabilities.

“MP Ianthia Simmons-Wade is an advocate for our seniors as the Ageing Well Committee Chair and also coordinates communications with our government Ministers. MP Crystal Caesar has focused her energies on assisting small businesses by hosting vendor markets, reviewing, and analyzing immigration reform policies.

“MP Lovitta Foggo has served at the Cabinet table, and brought her experience as a policy expert to government reform that has led to efficiencies necessary for a modern government.

“Our newly appointed Senators Lindsay Simmons and Arianna Hodgson are the next generation of leaders and are developing and honing their political skills.

“While it is an honour to acknowledge the women who stand at the forefront of this great party, it is well known the important role of our strong, talented, and dedicated women up and down Bermuda and who have undergirded our party for six decades.

“Mrs. Ann Pindar and Mrs. Rosalie Douglas were founding members of the Progressive Labour Party. Mrs. Douglas from Sandys branch, the great grand Dame Secretary, worked tirelessly so that the first PLP members were elected to the House of Assembly from Sandys Parish, Mr. Walter Roberts and Mr. Eugene Cox.

“Former Membership Secretary the late Mrs. Henry, former Secretary General Ms. Francine Simons, and Ms. Ann Webb were all crucial to the success of the Bermuda Progressive Labour Party and we are grateful for their service. These outstanding women represent a proud tradition of uplifting and empowering women in leadership.

“It is that tradition that brings us on International Women’s Day to honour and celebrate that the leadership team of this historic party are female. Our first female Chair Ms. Dawn Simmons and Deputy Chair Mrs. Lauren Bell who are providing effective leadership and strategic planning vital for the success of our party’s future.

“Supporting these leaders are Public Relations Officer Alexa Lightbourne, Secretary General Richelene Woolridge,Treasurer Shakia Smith, Tia Tankard and Organizer & Membership Secretary, Ms. Davida Morris. These ladies bring a wealth of political knowledge and experience and contribute to policy development and implementation across labour, health, education and other issues involving the government.

“At the grassroots level, we have numerous branch chairs and members who voluntarily engage with constituents, consistently keeping their fingers on the pulse of their community. We are indebted to you for your tireless efforts in support of our cause.

“There is a misguided belief that politics is no place for women, that we are too emotional to lead. That kind of thinking needs to go the way of the dodo bird because women around the world and on this island are leaders, and are leading successfully.

“The PLP chooses to take the Progressive route, by #Choosing to Challenge those sexist beliefs. History reflects that women not only belong in the political arena, we thrive here. The Bermuda Progressive Labour Party looks forward to honouring, nurturing, supporting, elevating and celebrating the current and next generation of phenomenal female leaders.

“On this International Women’s Day 2021, the PLP celebrates and salutes:

  • The women of the PLP
  • The women of Bermuda
  • The women of the world
  • “We are strong! We are powerful!
  • “We are changing our community!
  • “We are changing the world for the better!

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