Empower Rural Women – End Hunger and Poverty
For Immediate Release
March 6, 2012
International Women’s Day is celebrated around the world to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women. Since 1975 the United Nations has observed March 8th as International Women’s Day. In Canada, events are planned from coast to coast that celebrate the critical roles women play in the prosperity of Canada.
“Rural women harness a pioneering spirit that continues to drive the advancement of rights for all peoples in Canada” notes CASW President, Morel Caissie. “From their deep understanding of the fragility of life, women in rural, remote and Northern communities have a unique understanding that the destiny and prosperity of our nation is inextricably linked to the equality of opportunity; in full participation of the economy and just as important, by seeing oneself positively reflected and respected in all aspects of society.”As Status of Women Canada notes, in rural and remote regions of Canada, women make up approximately 45% of the labour force however significant disparities still persist in labour force participation, employment rates, and income between men and women. Unfortunately, these disparities are even more pronounced for Aboriginal women, who constitute a large part of the rural, remote and Northern populations.
“Aboriginal girls and women are the most vulnerable populations of Canadian society as evidenced by that fact that over the past decade, the numbers of missing and murdered Aboriginal women continues to increase” notes Caissie.
CASW acknowledges and commends the Government of Canada for endorsing, in 2010, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, however ongoing issues of inequality for Aboriginal women in Canada demand action.
“Canada must, in broad consultation with Aboriginal women and peoples, commit to a national strategy for investigating the ongoing violence Aboriginal women experience across our nation” states Caissie. “Without this, Canada will continue to completely fail in establishing an environment that empowers Aboriginal women to reclaim and realize their full potential.”
For more information:
Morel Caissie, MSW, RSW