Joylyn Boe speaking at the panel discussion alongside Judith, Inspector Lilly Joel, Yasmine Bjornum, Polly Walker and Moderator Epha Kalorib.


As part of 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence and to mark the International Day for People with Disabilities, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Utilities held a popular panel discussion.

More than 100 people attended the event where experts from the police and justice sector and local NGOs discussed the best ways of preventing gender-based violence in the local context.

During the panel discussion, Judith Iakavai, from the Vanuatu Society for People with Disabilities encouraged those present to think about inclusivity at all stages of the project cycle.

“I urge all designers and engineers to consider vulnerable people at the beginning of your planning,” she said. “Remember wheelchair users and all people with disabilities so that we can all have access to government services. Be inclusive!”

The Ministry’s work aligns closely with Vanuatu’s National Sustainable Development Plan and the Government’s Gender Policy.

Joylyn Boe works in human resources at the Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Utilities and made it clear that inclusiveness is everyone’s business.

“Gender-based violence is an obstacle to us constructing a fairer and more inclusive society for all,” she said. “We are working to shift social norms and that includes in our workplace.

It is excellent to see so many orange shirts today reminding us that we all must work together to make this change.”

The forum was supported by the Vanuatu-Australia Partnership as part of the long-term commitment to the national road sector.