International Women's Day Statement 2021

Originally Published March 08, 2021 

Alberta Liberal President Helen Mcmenamin and Interim Leader John Roggeveen issue the following statement on International Women’s Day: 

“On International Women’s Day, we celebrate women’s achievements and contributions to all aspects of society and recognize the heroic efforts and courage of those women who have fought for women’s rights. Despite all the progress, we must take even more action to reach gender equality. 

The gender pay gap in Canada is the 7th worst among OECD countries, with Alberta having the largest gap in the country. We also lag in areas such as representation on corporate boards and the availability of affordable childcare. Both the long-term and short-term impacts of the pandemic threaten to deepen this existing inequity. All levels of government must act now.

“The Alberta Liberals are calling for the introduction of pay equity legislation. Alberta is the only province in Canada without pay equity legislation. This is unacceptable. We are also calling for disclosure requirements that will require both the private and public sectors to publish data on pay gaps within their organizations.

“We must remove barriers to women participating in the workplace. That is why we propose publicly funded, affordable childcare programs to support mothers and increase labour participation among women. Additionally, we support flexible work policies that allow women to stay engaged in the labour market. 

“We must also do more to protect the most vulnerable women in society. We must increase funding for women’s shelters, implement the calls to action in the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Inquiry Report, and expand access to affordable housing. 

“Achieving gender equity is no easy goal, and these are only some of the policies we must implement in Alberta. We can close the gap between men and women with co-operation, knowledge, and action. In doing so, we can move one step closer to the equality promised, but not yet delivered, by our society.”