The Women's Program
December 4, 2009
This year marks the 20th Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre, when a man named Marc Lépine killed 14 young women at the École Polytechnique. »
December 4, 2007
PSAC National Women Conferences
Women get political as 250 PSAC delegates, observers and guests attended the National Women's Conference in Toronto November 23 – 25. Details and pictures
March 2, 2007
Equality for women and girls
Canada's February 28 statement to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women failed to mention the series of bad decisions the Harper government has made on equality for women and girls. PSAC has joined with women's organizations and released their own statement.
February 23, 2007
International Women's Day 2007:
Put Equality Back on Track
The Harper government may believe that women's equality has been achieved but women know better.
Pay inequity is still the rule. Women still only make 71 cents for every dollar earned by a man. Racialized women are at 64 cents and Aboriginal women are at 46 cents. This is equality!
Child care is either too expensive or not even available for many working parents. Harper's $100 a month taxable child care allowance doesn't make the grade if you're paying over a $1,000 a month for child care.
Status of Women Canada was responsible for promoting women's equality. No more, equality has been stripped from their mandate.
The Court Challenges Program that helped fund test cases to advance women's equality has been terminated.
It's time to put women's equality back on track.
Wear a “Put Equality back on Track” sticker – available from PSAC regional offices.
Join in International Women's Day activities to put equality back on track that are taking place in your community. Keep checking for updates on activities.
WHEREAS full equality between women in men in Canada has yet to be achieved; and
WHEREAS the federal government has eliminated “equality” from the mandate of Status of Women Canada (SWC) and has imposed a 43% cut in its operational budget, effective April 1, 2007; and
WHEREAS these cuts to SWC have resulted in the loss of 61 out of 131 positions, the majority of which are held by PSAC-Union of National Employees members; and
WHEREAS these cuts to SWC will result in:
- the closure of 12 out of 16 regional offices;
- the gutting of SWC's capacity to analyze and recommend federal policies that advance women's equality;
- a severe reduction in the capacity for federal-provincial-territorial collaboration on issues of importance to women;
- the elimination of the Independent Policy Research Fund; and
- a stain on our leadership on women's equality at the United Nations and other international forums; and
WHEREAS the federal government has implemented changes to SWC's Women's Program which will eliminate funding for women's groups who do research and advocacy, and open up funding to religious and for-profit groups; and
WHEREAS the federal government has eliminated the Court Challenges Program, which funded test cases that challenged federal laws and policies which violated constitutional equality rights, thereby effectively eliminating the access to justice for minority and disadvantaged groups; and
WHEREAS the federal government has rolled back important commitments to build a national child care program based on accessible, affordable, quality early learning and care; and
WHEREAS the federal government announced in September 2006 that it would not proceed to introduce proactive pay equity legislation; and
WHEREAS these and other bad program decisions require us to double our collective efforts to get women's equality back on track;
BE IT RESOLVED that the PSAC strongly oppose the Harper government's cuts to Status of Women Canada, and call for:
- A Status of Women Canada with a strong mandate to advance women's equality;
- a Status of Women Canada with the resources to lead the way when it comes to research and policy development on women's equality issues within government;
- A federal presence for women's equality across the country;
- A Women's Program that funds not-for-profit women's groups who research and advocate for change.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the PSAC fully endorse the “Put Equality Back on Track” campaign initiated by the Canadian Labour Congress, several other labour affiliates and the newly formed Ad-Hoc Coalition for Women's Equality and Human Rights, which will take place across the country between now and International Women's Day, and which will focus on:
- fighting for a renewed Status of Women Canada,
- a national child care plan,
- proactive pay equity legislation, and
- the renewal of the Court Challenges Program;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the PSAC commit to actively participating in the Put Equality Back on Track Campaign, and encourage Components, Regional Councils, Regional Committees, Area Councils, Regional Women's Committees, and other Union structures to engage in this campaign; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the PSAC make women's equality a key issue in the next federal election.
October 26, 2006
Did you know that October is Women's History Month in Canada?
Women's History Month represents an opportunity to highlight women's contributions and to recognize the achievements of diverse women as a vital part of our Canadian history. It also represents an opportunity to show how we all benefit from the efforts of our foremothers in our on-going quest for equality and represents an ideal opportunity to instill a sense of pride in our collective accomplishments.
This year's theme is “Aboriginal Women”. We will be posting a series of fact sheets highlighting the realities of Aboriginal women as well as their contributions to their communities and families and the unique challenges they face.
The fact sheets will specifically look at:
- Violence Against Aboriginal Women: the fight-back
- Aboriginal Women: a reality check - Part 1
- Aboriginal Women: a reality check - Part 2
March 8, 2006 - International Women's Day
It's time to rise again - we all need a universal child care program
International Women's Day represents nearly a century of struggle for the equality of women world-wide.
This March 8th women in the PSAC are not only celebrating the gains we have achieved over the last century, we are also actively participating in a campaign to ensure that child care is publicly (and not for profit) delivered, universal and affordable.
- Read the PSAC's Statement.
- Send a letter to PM Harper
- Sign the Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada petition
If you have any questions about the PSAC Women's Program, please contact Mariam Abou-Dib , the National Women's and Human Rights Programs Officer.
Changing the face of power
Equity issues were first raised in the PSAC in the mid-1970s and were, at that time, focused on women's issues.
At the 1976 PSAC Triennial Convention, the first woman member of the Alliance Executive Committee and the first woman National Director were elected and 24% of the Convention delegates were women.
A Status of Women Committee was also struck in 1976 as a Standing Committee of the National Board of Directors. It was soon after renamed the Equal Opportunities for Women Committee and then renamed the Equal Opportunities Committee in the mid-1980s. These name changes reflected the expanding mandate and broader focus of the Committee on all equity issues.
The PSAC was also involved in a variety of committees with Treasury Board at this time involving affirmative action for women.
The 1980 CR strike played a major role in raising issues of concern for women, such as leave for care and nurturing of pre-school-age children, adoption leave and maternity/parental leave. It was also in 1980 that the first Pay Equity settlement was reached for the Library Sciences group.
The first National Women's Conference was held in 1985 and the full Women's Conference cycle of regional and national conferences began following the 1985 Triennial Convention where 6 cents per member per month had been allotted for the funding of these conferences. At the 1988 Convention, funding for the women's conferences was increased to 21 cents per member per month.
At the 1988 PSAC Triennial Convention, Regional Women's Committees were constitutionally recognized and therefore funded and local organizing was strengthened.
The Women's Program continues to expand with on-going conferences at the regional and national levels as well as through the development of campaigns and initiatives on emerging issues. Some examples include:
A PSAC Women's ToolKit: an issues-based organizing toolkit which will include fact sheets with the latest information, statistics and trends on important issues for women as well as how to mobilize women through action.
Globalization: as part of our union's involvement in the broader movement for a society based on justice and equality, the Women's Program is providing a space where an integrated analysis of gender/race/class is included in the globalization discussion.
For information on these and other campaigns, please contact the PSAC Women's Program Officer:
- International Women's Day
- Women's History Month
- Plan of action on Globalization
- PSAC Policy 34: Woman and the Alliance: From the Margins to the Mainsteam
- PSAC Policies re Human Rights Issues
- Regional Women's Committees (RWC)
- December 6, National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women
- Other Equity Days
- World Women's March 2000
- Child care
- Free trade
- The global economy
- Health care and education
- Women's jobs and income
- Unemployment insurance
Date Modified : 2011/09/08