UN Program To Introduce Women-Only Buses In PNG

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Initiative aimed at creating safe spaces for women, girls

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Nov. 12, 2013) – The United Nations' program for women in Papua New Guinea plans to introduce women-only buses on the streets of Port Moresby.

The initiative is aimed at creating more safe public spaces for women and girls.

It comes as a UN Women's report found that 87 per cent of women surveyed said they're sexually harassed on public transport in Port Moresby.

PNG UN Women's program specialist Julie Bukikun says the initiative goes hand in hand with the safe markets campaign.

"We've been looking at how to create a safe market environment and we have some pilot sites in Port Moresby... looking at addressing safety and security of women and girls particularly those that go into the market to sell and to buy," she said.

"There's also issues around buses - or transportation for women and girls.

"What we found so far there is a lot of safety issues with women and girls and even some men have spoken up saying that women and girls do not always feel safe to use the public transport."

Ms Bukikun says there's a great need for the program but that there are still processes to be completed before it can be launched.

She says if the program works well in Port Moresby, it could be rolled out into other provinces.

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