Mexico City swore in its first elected female mayor on Wednesday, as more women are pursuing active roles in Mexican politics and are transforming a male-dominated field.
Claudia Sheinbaum Pardo, a 56-year-old environmental engineer and former head of Mexico City’s southern borough of Tlalpan, gave a speech before the city’s congress. It highlighted a swath of challenges most large cities face in areas such as education and transportation, and at least one gender-specific issue plaguing most of the country: violence against women.
“We will bring cases of femicide to justice,” Sheinbaum Pardo said to applause.
Sheinbaum said she would disband the city’s riot police, a decision activists had long called on since police killed, wounded or arrested more than 300 people who were demonstrating ahead of the 1968 Olympics.
Sheinbaum also pledged to build a new bus system catering specifically to economically depressed areas, and promised to eradicate corruption in city government.
Also this year, women in Mexico won half the seats in the national and state legislatures.