International Women's Day Puts Spotlight on Ottawa

Recent Legislation Bound to Hurt Canada's Women

OTTAWA - International
Women’s Day is a reminder to celebrate the great achievements that society has
made in recognizing the equality of women.  “Canadian girls now have role
models, they have the right to be involved in politics, they have many
opportunities in every aspect of life.  This is worthy of celebration,”
said Green Leader Elizabeth May.  “But the job is not done. 
International Women’s Day is also a day to recognize that we have to continue
the work for gender equality.”

is important to look at legislation through the lens of how it impacts women,”
said May.  “For example, cancelling the long-gun registry hurts women at
risk of domestic violence, closing Employment Insurance offices is a hardship
for many unemployed women, and potential cuts to Old Age Security is a worry
for senior women.  We must ensure that legislation is beneficial for women
at any age.”

political representation is still lacking in Canada.  Women are still not
paid equally to men.  Key programs such as the Court Challenges for
promoting Charter rights have been lost.  The Status of Women Canada has
been hampered in its work.  And we are still lacking adequate child care
programs in Canada.  While March 8th is a good day to celebrate, we must
also realize that the journey is not yet complete,” said Green Status of Women
Critic Rebecca Harrison.

rights in the House of Commons made news recently when questions were raised
over the right of an MP to vote while holding her baby.  “As a woman in
Parliament, I see clearly that we have a ways to go before we achieve equity,”
said May. “We need more women to get involved in the political process and for
that to happen, we need to have settings and procedures that are welcoming and
encouraging. Women should not feel they have to choose between having a family
and being involved in their government.”

represent over half of the population of Canada, yet less than 21 percent of
Parliamentarians are women.

United Nations International Women’s Day began in 1911 to coordinate efforts
for women's rights and participation in social, political and economic

Media Contact:

Rebecca Harrison