New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern takes on a new role after leaving politics : NPR
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In an impassioned and, at times, personal speech this week in parliament, Jacinda Ardern touched on family, politics and one of the few things she will ask of her colleagues as she leaves.
who is she Former Prime Minister of New Zealand.
- Arden stepped down as leader of the country in January, saying she “didn’t have enough left in the tank,” and this week said goodbye to parliament and politics altogether.
- Ardern joined the New Zealand House of Representatives 15 years ago when she was just 28 years old. At that time, she was its youngest member.
- Ardern’s period as PM from 2017-23 was marked by major crises for the country, including the Christchurch mosque shootings that left 51 dead; the volcanic eruption on White Island that killed 22; and the coronavirus pandemic.
- She has just announced that she has been appointed a trustee of Prince William’s Earthshot Prize, a program that grants funds to projects that aim to save the planet.
What’s the big deal?
- Arden became known outside of New Zealand for a leadership style that contrasted with those of Donald Trump in the United States and Boris Johnson in the United Kingdom — her contemporaries at the time — where they assert that you can be anxious, sensitive and kind and still be an effective leader.
- She has also faced and deflected sexism, most recently shrugging off a question about her age while meeting the then Prime Minister of Finland, Sanna Marin.
- Ardern made history when she brought her baby Neve to the UN General Assembly three months after giving birth.
What are you saying? In her final speech this week, Ardern spoke about both her personal and political ambitions and achievements.
When she described herself as “troubled”:
Some might say the worst possible character trait to have as a politician, or the best depending on how you slice it.
I have always believed that this is a place where you can make a difference. I leave knowing that it will be true … And not only can you be here, you can run just like me.
On climate change:
Climate change is a crisis. It is upon us. And so one of the few things I will ask of this House when I leave is to please take the politics out of climate change.
On her personal life:
I haven’t experienced a round of failed IVF since I became leader of the Labor Party. I thought I had found myself on a path that meant I would not be a mother. Instead of processing this, I campaigned to become Prime Minister, a pretty good distraction as far as they go. Imagine my surprise when a few months later I discovered I was pregnant.
So, what now?
- Arden said she was “humbled and excited” for her new position with the Earthshot Prize.
- Ardern will also take on an unpaid role as a special envoy for Christchurch Call, an organization she helped establish in 2019 in the days after the mosque shootings, which aims to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online.