Jacinda Ardern is the Prime Minister of New Zealand, at 38 years of age the country’s youngest prime minister in over 150 years.
A graduate of Communications Studies from the University of Waikato (2001), Ardern has been globally recognised and praised for the leadership skills she displayed in response to the mass shootings in two mosques in Christchurch on Friday, 15 March 2019. The attacks considered the worst in the history of New Zealand, left a total of 50 people dead. Apart from visiting the Muslim community in Christchurch wearing a headscarf, a really thoughtful symbolic gesture of empathy with the grieving community, Ardern also pledged to cover the funeral costs of the victims of the attacks as well as offer financial assistance to their families. Six days after the attacks, Ardern banned the sale of all military style semi-automatics (MSSA) and assault rifles and announced plans to tighten the country’s gun laws. In April 2019, swiftly matching word with action, lawmakers voted to amend New Zealand’s gun laws, barely one month after the attacks.
Ardern is passionate about tackling child poverty and improving the wellbeing of New Zealanders. In May 2019, New Zealand released its ‘wellbeing’ budget focusing on addressing mental health, indigenous welfare, and child poverty. The prime minister made it clear that the budget put people before economic indicators.
The 29th world’s most powerful woman in 2018, according to Forbes, Jacinda Ardern is our Woman of the Week because of the decisiveness of her style of administration and her sensitivity toward the problems of the weaker ones in her country.
“Her ‘performance has been extraordinary’: Jacinda Ardern lauded for her response to New Zealand mosque attacks.” The Lily News. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://www.thelily.com/her-performance-has-been-extraordinary-jacinda-ardern-lauded-for-her-response-to-new-zealand-mosque-attacks/
“Jacinda Ardern unveils New Zealand’s ‘wellbeing’ budget.” Al Jazeera. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/05/ardern-unveils-zealand-wellbeing-budget-190530062646522.html
“Jacinda Ardern.” Encyclopaedia Britannica. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://www.britannica.com/biography/Jacinda-Ardern
“Jacinda Ardern.” Forbes. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://www.forbes.com/profile/jacinda-ardern/#1497afa1374d
“Jacinda Ardern.” Wikipedia. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacinda_Ardern
“New Zealand votes to amend gun laws after Christchurch attack.” Reuters. Thur. 04 July 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-newzealand-shooting-parliament/new-zealand-votes-to-amend-gun-laws-after-christchurch-attack-idUSKCN1RM0VX