Thinking locally about Women’s Day


Advertise with us

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 16/03/2022 (440 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

International Women’s Day took place on March 8. The day marks a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. But it is also an important time to talk about the work that must be done to ensure equality and safety for women in our province.

The international theme this year was “Break the bias.” While the world has come a long way in ensuring women have more equality and opportunity, we know there are still disparities. Sometimes these are more readily discussed and documented with statistics and evidence. But these are also daily experiences in our homes, communities, workplaces and governments. While progress is being made, events such as the recent COVID-19 pandemic can reveal the gaps still there.

A 2021 report from Statistics Canada indicated that women were more severely affected by employment losses in the first year of the pandemic. This is on top of existing statistics that verify the existence of a gender pay gap between women and men. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development marks Canada as having the eighth-highest gender pay gap out of 43 countries. As the pandemic continued, there were concerns that women would be disproportionately affected by impacts of childcare and caregiving.

Last year our government invested more than $600,000 to initiatives that support women to develop careers in trades in Winnipeg and in four northern and remote communities. We also partnered with our federal counterparts on a multi-year plan to improve affordability and accessibility of quality childcare for Manitobans. These initiatives aim to help ensure women have more opportunities in the workforce.

When we look back at some of the milestones reached by women, some of these are only in the last 40 years. In 1980, Ruth Krindle was the first Manitoba woman appointed a judge by the Government of Canada. Canada’s first woman astronaut, Dr. Roberta Bondar, went into space in 1992. Jean Augustine was the first Black Canadian woman elected to the House of Commons in 1993. In 2007, Leona Aglukkaq was the first Inuit woman MP to hold a senior cabinet post. In 2015, Amanda Lathlin was the first First Nations woman elected to the Manitoba Legislature. Our current premier, Heather Stefanson, is the first female premier in Manitoba’s history.

We have a rich history of women paving the way in science, technology, arts, politics and more. Now we look forward to what the next 20 or 30 years can bring and how we support today’s girls and women. We can do this by continuing to challenge stereotypes and actively creating environments free of bias and discrimination. As part of marking International Women’s Day, we can ask ourselves what we are doing to break the bias — in our daily lives and as a community.

Audrey Gordon

Audrey Gordon
Southdale constituency report

Audrey Gordon is the PC MLA for Southdale.

Report Error Submit a Tip


Advertise With Us