After 30 years of service, Jamila Bayaz a 50-year-old mother of five, has become the first female police chief in Afganistan. She is a district chief in one of Kabul’s 10 districts that serve 5 million people, including the president.
In most other places being a police officer would be high risk enough, but for a woman in Afghanistan, it is even more so. Violence against women has reached an all time high of 25 percent, according to reports from Afganistan’s Human Rights Commission.
Colonel Bayaz who needs 4 bodyguards to protect her on the job, says fear wont keep her from doing her job.
“I work day and night,” she stated, in an interview quoted in the Vancouver Sun. “I am ready to serve, I am not scared nor am I afraid.”
She says that though there are difficulties, she intends to keep working and hopes to inspire other women to join the police force as they see her in uniform.
Colonel Bayaz is just one of 1,551 females of 157,000 personnel in Afghanistan’s national police force. Even though that is just 1 for every 10,000 female Afghans, this is still a drastic increase from back in 2005 when there were just 180 female officers according to an Oxfam report.