Shreela Flather, the first Asian woman to become a member of Britain's upper chamber of parliament, argues in a new book that "women must be central to every initiative, business project and political goal, rather than being merely afterthoughts or decoration".
The Millennium Development Goals, eight measurable targets set by the United Nations in 2000 to help improve the lives of the poor by 2015, cannot be met, and the U.N. must shift its focus to women, the Baroness Flather writes in "Woman, Acceptable Exploitation for Profit".
Flather, who became a life peer for the Conservative Party in 1990, was also the first minority woman to become an elected councillor and the first Asian woman to become the Mayor of Windsor and Maidenhead.
As a member of the House of Lords she lobbied successfully for the construction of a memorial in London to commemorate volunteers from India, Africa and the Caribbean who served in World War One and World War Two.
She spoke to AlertNet in London about her career, book, and International Women's Day.