Sunday, April 5, 2009

Maybe Harper can help Afghan women, by giving them the word "equality" that he took out of the mandate for Canada's status of women

The Karzai government in Afghanstan is on the verge of passing new legislation that makes it legal for husbands to rape their wives.

Meanwhile this is the Afghan regime on whose behalf we are fighting?

The issue of women's equality is not exactly an issue on which Harper occupies he moral high ground, since Harper took the word “equality” out of the mandate for the Status of Women (October 13, 2006) about the same time he was raiding seniors nest eggs with his corrupted idea of tax “fairness” (October 31, 2006)

NAC condemns changes to Status of Women Canada's mandate

Canada NewsWire. Ottawa: Oct 13, 2006. pg. 1

TORONTO, Oct. 13 /CNW/ - Last week the National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC) held its Annual General Meeting in Toronto. NAC membership, composed mainly of grassroots women's equality-seeking organizations from across the country, came out of that historic meeting more determined than ever to fight for equality rights in Canada.

The re-emergence of NAC came on the heels of the federal government's dismantling of the Court Challenges program, and the 38.5 percent funding cuts to Status of Women Canada with a fundamental change in its mandate. "Equality is not a part of the Women's Program agenda under this government", explained NAC's newly elected president, Dolly Williams. "Minister Bev Oda, is simply applying Conservative Party ideology to propagate the notion that women have reached equality. This is especially puzzling when only 7 of the 27 of Harper's cabinet are women. Is this what they mean by equality?"

The federal Conservative government says it will no longer fund women's groups that do advocacy, lobbying or general research as part of the new terms and conditions for grants. This is seen as a deliberate tactic to cripple women's organizations that rely on these funds to promote substantive equality rights for women in Canada.

The elimination of the Court Challenges Program also confirms the new government's game plan. "NAC has been able to use this program in the past to question the constitutionality of cuts to core funding for equality-seeking women's organizations," affirmed Ms. Williams. "The government thinks that it has found a way to silence us and our sister organizations, but we will not be deterred." The federal government is abandoning its duty to uphold the democratic process. Without the Court Challenges program and with the devastating cuts to Status of Women Canada, women will have little to no access to bring their injustices to the legal and political forefront.

In the face of the Harper government's new tactics to yield women's issues non-existent and near invisible, NAC's membership is determined, despite these obstacles, to assert a national voice to advocate and lobby for equality. There is an absolute need for coordinated women's voices at the national level. The Harper government's dereliction of duty to sustain and protect access to democratic accountability measures must be exposed. NAC and its membership are prepared to work to ensure this happens.

"Women will not stand by passively while this minority government unravels the work accomplished by the equality-seeking women's movement and its social justice allies over the past thirty years", concluded Williams.

The National Action Committee on the Status of Women has been one of Canada's longest running equality-seeking women's organizations. A coalition of member groups, NAC has been fighting for women's equality for over 30 years.


Anonymous said...

I heard Harper was thinking of eliminating the GST on burkas, hoping the fashion would catch on with Canadian women.


Anonymous said...

As a female income trust investor - thank you very much for posting this.

After going through my annual reports this year - I can see a lot of companies I hold shares in are run by a bunch of CONs who are equally disrespectful of women.
I guess we are almost even ... I felt the need to withhold on a lot of people and to vote against these CON board of directors. Too bad for Canadian women, I don't own enough to make a difference.

I guess that old Clash song is still applicable ... "Know Your Rights" That statement is applicable on anything in Canada these days. Followed by the cliche, that can be applied in so many circumstances "if you don't use it or exercise your rights - they take it away".