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International Women's Day

Updated: Mar 21

Today (March 8) is International Women’s Day, a global day to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, raise awareness about women’s equality and lobby for accelerated gender parity.

This year’s global campaign theme is #EmbraceEquity to spark discussions about why equal opportunitie

s are no longer enough and to raise awareness that equity and equality are inherently different concepts. In short, equality means individuals or groups of people are given the same resources or opportunities, while equity recognizes that each person has different lived experiences and circumstances and may need different resources and opportunities to reach an equal outcome. To celebrate International Women’s Day, this morning we hosted a special event where guest speakers Louisa Taylor, Director, Refugee 613, Sharon Nyangweso, Founder and CEO, QuakeLab and Karla Briones, Entrepreneur and Consultant, Karla Briones Consulting spoke about their journeys as women leaders and the challenges they have had to overcome. We invite you to watch a recording of the event.

Women and Gender Equity Strategy

At the City, we know equity is essential to address imbalanced social systems. The City’s Women and Gender Equity Strategy was designed with equity as a guiding principle, and we as a municipal government are making progress in making meaningful change, including:

  • Integrating a gender lens in the City’s Official Plan for the first time, impacting how the City prioritizes the needs of women and gender-diverse persons

  • Standardizing the use of an 'Indigenous, gender and equity implications section' in all reports to Committee and Council, ensuring that the diverse needs of intersectional groups are considered by staff during the development and implementation of City initiatives

  • Launching the LEAD IT Strategic Hiring Process to prioritize hiring candidates from employment equity groups including women

  • Allocating gender-based funding to benefit community organizations serving women and gender-diverse persons

  • Installing 200 gender-inclusive signs in public single-stall washrooms in more than 80 City of Ottawa recreation facilities

  • Launching the Period Packs project, an innovative initiative to address period poverty by improving access to menstrual products

As phase one of the strategy concludes this month, we are proud of the achievements made to date and look forward to phase two which will be designed in partnership with our community in 2023. Please join us today as we celebrate women leaders at all levels across the organization and in our community, who work tirelessly to promote equity for the advancement of women.

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