Saturday, March 10

Standing up by sitting in

F-email fightback presents the weekly round-up of "women's week" activities. The fightback momentum continues to build.

Harper’s Conservatives wanted women to stay home and be quiet. . . We refused!

In this round-up, we send bread and roses to the women who organized in their communities. Women like Dianne Crowell of Yarmouth (NS) who has been celebrating International Women’s Day for about 25 years. But she said this year it was more important than ever to gather with others to recognize women’s struggles and "cause a bit of ruckus" about the cutbacks in women’s services.

Now what?: Canadian Dimension writes:"It will be an uphill battle — as it always is for feminist women — to be heard in the mainstream media and to overcome the Harper agenda. But it is this kind organizing that will be crucial to defeating the New Conservative Government at the polls. In fact, it will be the women’s vote that ensures Harper’s defeat."


  • PSAC Occupies SWC office "Harper and Oda’s fantasy that women’s equality has arrived isn’t supported by the facts," according to Benson. "Women working full-time still only earn 71 cents for every dollar men earn. Only 15% of women with young children have access to child care. Women and girls still face high levels of violence with Aboriginal women even more severely affected."
  • PSAC press release - March 8th - Women Occupy Bev Oda’s Office The women are protesting the Harper government’s broken election promise to do more for women’s equality, particularly the cuts to the Status of Women Canada’s mandate, operational funding and regional offices.
  • Workplace Violence - women must still seek protection IWD was an opportunity to focus attention on violence against women and girls in Canadian society and to consider concrete measures to end this social problem. We simply must take action to end violence so that women and girls are able to participate fully in Canadian society.
  • CAW-Women Hit by Manufacturing Job Loss Over the past five years women have lost a proportionately greater share of their manufacturing jobs than have men, a new CAW study shows.
  • CUPE - Canadian's mourn the Harper conservative's silencing of women's equality "For women in Canada the sting of the Federal government abandoning its commitment to equality is razor sharp. It is not only about abandoning funding to the Status of Women program, it is about the utter lack of commitment to the principal of equality," said Paul Moist, president of Canada's largestunion
  • Harper's government damages women's equality, says ETT "Since coming to power just over a year ago, Canada's new government under Stephen Harper has done more damage to the cause of women's equality than any government in recent memory," said Sonia Ellis of the Elementary Teachers of Toronto.
  • OFL and Book Launch - "A Century of Women and Work" "Women's equality struggles have produced nothing less than a social revolution, but economic progress has been thwarted by federal and provincial governments who, in good times or bad, have always told women to wait."
  • ILO study warns on the feminization of working poverty More women then ever before are in work, but a persistent gap in status, job security, wages and education between women and men is contributing to the "feminization of working poverty", according to a new report by the International Labour Office (ILO) issued for International Women's Day.
  • SEIU (Service Employees International Union) Canada Celebrates Canadian Women "This is a time for people to come together and celebrate the progress that women have made but also to be mindful that we still have a long way to go in our fight for full equality."
  • NUPGE-World marking 30th anniversary of International Women's Day Stephen Harper’s Conservative government has made a series of decisions that seriously undermine equality for women in Canada

Women's Organizations
  • Women Across Canada Call on Harper to Put Equality Back on Track! “The Harper government has consistently refused to address the concerns that have been expressed in the last few months by thousands of women, social justice organizations and trade unions from Québec and the rest of Canada, says Paulette Senior for the Ad Hoc Coalition for Women’s Equality and Human Rights. “ But women won't go away. We're going to keep calling on Mr. Harper to put equality back on track!”
  • Halifax - A Mixture of Protest and Celebration The evening included the mock trial of Stephen Harper for cuts his government has made to women’s and social programs and a short march to the Quinpool Road office of Status of Women Canada.
  • Protesters, critics line up to take shots at minister on women's day Most controversially, the word equality has been removed from literature related to the agency. Oda has argued that the word is unnecessary in a country where men and women are considered equal by law.
  • For those who think that women have achieved equality The New Brunswick Advisory Council on the Status of Women to mark March 8, International Women's Day, released two reminder lists, one for people who think women have reached equality and one for those who think women have not made any gains.
  • OXFAM and FAFIA - We want a world that respects women's rights If you are a woman on this planet, you are more likely to be poor, more likely to be a victim of violence, more likely to be voiceless and more likely to be exploited. You are less likely to have access to education, services or corridors of power.This reality - and the power dynamics that create and sustain it - is the central challenge we face in making poverty history.
  • The Power and Potential in Women - Labrador City
  • NDP - Oda fails Canadian women, again “I have heard from hundreds of women’s groups from across Canada,” said Irene Mathyssen, NDP critic for the Status of Women. “All of these groups had 3 specific demands: cancel the closure of the regional offices; reinstate the Policy Research Fund; and reverse the restrictive funding restrictions from Status of Women Canada’s Women’s Program.”
  • - Harper Should be Ashamed on International Women's Day Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his regressive government have set back women's equality in Canada by 30 years, Liberal Critic on the Status of Women Maria Minna said on International Women's Day.
  • Guelph and District Multicultural Centre - Changing face of Women's Day "It's not just the mothers, it's all women who we're celebrating,"
  • Toronto IWD
  • B.C./Yukon women’s groups - No Advocacy No Lobbying Rule Stalls Women’s Equality "The Minister’s announcement of the $5m reinvestment does not represent additional funding. That $5 million came from the closure of 12 of 16 Regional Offices, which worked very closely with women’s organizations in local communities, " says Shelagh Day, of the national group, the Feminist Alliance for International Action (FAFIA).
  • B.C./Yukon women’s groups -Minister Bev Oda stonewalls women’s equality organizations “That the Minister could hear today what these women’s groups had to communicate about the disturbing conditions of women in Canada, and not even pause to reconsider her government’s cut-backs to programmes critical to women’s equality, is astonishing.”
  • YWCA - not a lot to celebrate Ms. Senior was deeply disappointed that Bev Oda, the Minister Responsible for the Status of Women did not attend any of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women meetings. She was also disappointed by the statement presented to the Commission by the federal government which gives a clear indication Canada is falling behind as an international leader on women’s issues.
  • Montreal - Communiqué de presse Les femmes membres du Collectif 8 mars demandent que ceux-ci profitent de la présente campagne électorale au Québec pour prendre des engagements fermes en matière d’égalité, de justice sociale et de luttes contre les discriminations.
  • Women shut out of business, say Quebec filmmakers In an open letter published Thursday, International Women's Day, in Montreal newspapers including Le Devoir and La Presse, the filmmakers blame indifferent public funding bodies, broadcasters and producers for shutting women out of the Quebec film industry.

Aboriginal Women's Groups

Canadian Magazines
  • Canadian Dimension - Back Atcha Backlash Harper's attack on women’s equality should not have been a surprise to feminists across the country, given the backlash already at play across the nation. The corporate media has promoted a fictional narrative of feminism as passé in a “post-feminist” world since at least the 1980s
  • Our Times has published a special women's issue on sale now at newstands

The Web and Bloggers
  • YouTube publishes Halifax video of women telling stories about the women who insoired them
  • Bloggers - Reflect on Sexism Thinking about sexism makes us sad. And not just because sexism is the terrible thing that it obviously is, but because people so often deny that it even exists today
  • says that the war on sexism has yet to be won We must continue to protest the fact that Ottawa can find billions of dollars to fight an unjust war abroad, but refuses to find even millions for us broads at home. And that's just one reason why the century-old war on sexism has yet to be won. Women around the world need to stay the course, and smoke out patriarchy wherever it hides and plots against us, starting at 24 Sussex Drive.
  • Dykes Against Harper Blog gives us five reasons why feminism is needed now more than ever: The real betrayal is not feminism itself, but the people who condemn women to poverty, violence and exclusion by arrogantly assuming that we have nothing left to fight for. As the folks at Briarpatch noted in a recent editorial, "feminism gets bad press not because it's dead, but because it's dangerous."

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