The COVID–19 pandemic continues to devastate the lives and wellbeing of millions of people around the world; women and girls, people with disabilities, youth, older people, and sexual and gender minorities are most at risk of ‘being left behind’. While confirmed cases of COVID–19 are low in the Pacific compared with other regions, the threat of the virus remains and the wider social and economic impacts are already evident. Pacific Island countries grappling with pervasive inequality, sustainable development
challenges and climate change now must consider their response to the COVID–19 pandemic.
This paper envisions an inclusive and transformative feminist response focused on four key outcomes: preserving access to healthcare and essential services; promoting women’s economic empowerment; protecting women and girls from gender–based violence; and supporting vulnerable and marginalised groups to express their voice and claim their rights amid the pandemic.