Woman Parliamentarian Fights for Ukraine
Oksana Syroid — Deputy Chairwoman of the eighth convocation of the Verkhovna Rada, believes that women are capable of anything
As part of her job, Syroid, could be found at an event in Lviv where firefighters from across Ukraine competes to be named the best in the country.
Next, she had back to back meetings with single-member district candidates and then with a French senator. She only has time for a TV interview in the car.
“The pre-election tour across Galicia starts on Sunday. So we’re taking it easy,” she said.
Next – she has a meeting with the Sosnivka town council. Most of its members are male.
“Women make up only 12 percent of the Ukrainian parliament. But if you ask people, they will say there are more. Just because we’re active. And quantity turns into quality. Because you have to constantly prove what you know and what you can do – just because you’re a woman,” Syroid said.
A heated discussion with voters lasts for more than two hours. A
Syroid can recall that when she attended university, she was a personal assistant to an MP. At that time, she had decided to never go into politics.
However, the Euromaidan revolution was a turning point for her. In 2014, Oksana Syroid was elected to the Ukrainian parliament.
“When I went into the parliament and was elected as the deputy chairperson, I felt for the first time that I, as a woman, had done something worthy. Journalists came to me and asked, “When did you realize you could do this?” I thought about it and answered, “You know, if you hadn’t asked me, I wouldn’t have thought about this,” she said.
Even now, some politicians tend to look down on female MPs.
“It’s very easy to neutralize this. When you’re condescending towards them in return, they’re shocked – “how can you do this?”. But it helps,” she said.
With a deputy mandate and a new position, came new duties and a 15-hour workday.
“This sedentary lifestyle was driving me into depression. You don’t get a chance to move much, you only walk from your office to the praesidium, and then to the session hall. Like a pony in a pen, as I call it,” Syroid said.
This is when she took up boxing
“When you’re boxing, you can’t get distracted for even a second. You can’t think about anything else. If you get distracted for a split second, your legs and arms don’t work together anymore. And it’s very important to me. 1.5 hours of training — and I don’t think about anything for 1.5 hours,” she said.
Oksana Syroid — Deputy Chairwoman of the eighth convocation of the Verkhovna Rada, believes that women are capable of anything.