[This was a policy brief submitted to our gender and development class in UEA]
Fiji, an island country comprised of more than 300 islands and atolls, is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change. According to COP 23 Fiji (2017), some of the climate change impacts the small island state are facing and will continue to face include sea level rise, stronger El Niño patterns, food and water borne diseases, extreme weather events, and ocean acidification.
Some if these impacts will have a greater effect on women than on men. For example, salinisation and drought may mean women have to spend longer collecting water and increases in infectious or water-borne diseases post-climate change events will result in a greater burden of care for women. (UN Women Fiji, n.d.)
UN Women Fiji (ibid) also identified an increase in gender based violence post-disaster. Women in evacuation and temporary shelters are subjected to rape and violence. There is also low access to sexual and reproductive health post-disaster.
These vulnerabilities that women face need to be addressed through gender specific responses for climate change adaptation.
Download full policy brief in PDF format: INCREASING RESILIENCY OF WOMEN IN FIJI.