Typically, when SPN presents similar views from the BC Government and the Official Opposition, we present them in that order: the government first followed by the opposition. Today, in the interest of metaphorically turning things on their heads, we present the Official Opposition viewpoint first, followed by a statement from our Premier.
Final word, as always, goes to our beloved Sooke reader. Happy IWD! –Britt, SPN
New Democrats celebrate historic milestone on International Women’s Day
John Horgan, Leader of the B.C. New Democrats, and Maurine Karagianis, spokesperson for women’s issues, commemorated International Women’s Day and released the following statement:
“Today is a day to honour the women in our lives, and the women in our communities.
“Here in British Columbia, we have a real milestone to celebrate this International Women’s Day, with the election of two new female New Democrat MLAs, Melanie Mark, and Jodie Wickens, giving us the largest percentage of women in the legislature in B.C. history. even more special is the fact that Melanie Mark is the first First Nations woman to take a seat in the B.C. Legislature. We hope her historic achievement is just the beginning of better representation of Aboriginal people in our government.
“However, despite these strides, we still have a long way to go. Women still only make up just over a third of those sitting in the B.C. legislature, and in the federal parliament, women make up only one quarter of MPs.[sam id=”15″ codes=”true”]“This under-representation is reflected in the way that governments respond, or don’t respond, to pressing issues that women face, such as access to reproductive health, investments in childcare, and action on domestic violence.
“Discrimination and gender-based violence continue to be real problems that women face in the workplace, in the home, and in our communities. Adding to the struggles women face, the gender pay gap in Canada is double the global average, with women taking home, on average, $8000 less per year than men doing the same work.
“These problems are even more pronounced for women who face multiple barriers, such as visible minorities and women with disabilities, which is why our work to end discrimination must not erase how different forms of discrimination make life more difficult for some women than for others.
“International Women’s Day is a reminder that we can do better.
“Together, we must work towards a province and a country that is more just, more equal, and more prosperous.”
Premier’s statement on International Women’s Day
Premier Christy Clark has issued the following statement in recognition of International Women’s Day:
“Today is an opportunity to reflect on how far we have come, and celebrate the advancements we have made together toward gender equality. Throughout the province, I have met women who are leaders in fields like business, science, skilled trades, and sport.
“Since becoming Premier, I have made it a priority to give women more opportunities in leadership roles. Just under half of my Cabinet and senior public-service leaders are women, as well as over 40% of our government’s board appointees.
“But we still have a long way to go and we can’t let progress slow down. It’s up to all of us to take action to accelerate gender balance and respect for women, whose fresh perspectives, new ideas and broader experiences all benefit our diverse, strong and growing economy.
“This International Women’s Day, with the theme ‘pledging for parity’, I encourage you to reflect on how you can help promote equality and opportunity for future generations, because when women succeed, our whole community succeeds.”