By REAL Women of Canada staff
OTTAWA, Ontario, November 19, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The near collapse of the feminist movement in Canada, and the failure of the feminist movement to become an international political force, has been an ongoing concern for the federal Status of Women (SOW). Consequently, it has decided to take decisive action (using the taxpayer’s dollar) to organize what they hope will become a new, powerful feminist movement both in Canada and internationally.
In fiscal year 2008-2009, the SOW gave a grant totaling $1,016,400.00 to fund a large feminist conference, called the Women’s Worlds 2011 (WW 2011). Its objective is to draw feminist women together from across Canada and abroad to form a new feminist movement. The conference is to be held in the Ottawa-Gatineau area in July 2011. The planning and co-ordination of the conference are being carried out by the Women’s Studies Programs at Carleton University and the University of Ottawa, in concert with l’Université du Québec en Outaouais and Saint Paul University in Ottawa.
The steering committee and sub committees are comprised of “volunteers” – many of whom appear to be students from the Women’s Studies Programs at the various universities. There are, however, several experienced feminist activists who are in charge of the operation, to keep a firm hand on the project.
Jill Vickers, a feminist political science professor at Carleton University. She is a self-described socialist and supporter of the NDP, who ran for that party unsuccessfully in the 1979 federal election.
Ms. Vickers spent her career researching and writing about feminism and gender. She is the former president of the feminist Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW), which averaged SOW funding of $383,000, yearly, for over 24 years. The federal funding of CRIAW was cancelled in 2007. Grants from SOW to CRIAW between 1984 and 2007, total $2,270,950.
Bonnie Diamond is a former executive director of the Elizabeth Fry Society; former executive director of The National Association of Women and the Law (NAWL) and of MATCH International, which recently lost its federal funding from CIDA (Canadian International Development Agency). This latter event may curtail her career trajectory.
Nancy Peckford is just like Bonnie Diamond above, in that Ms. Peckford is like a bee, constantly chasing honey, flitting from one feminist organization to another. She is currently the executive director of the feminist group Equal Voice, (see REALITY, November- December, 2009). She served in 2007-2008 as executive director of Feminist Alliance for International Action (FAFIA); was a researcher for Women and the Law (NAWL) and was a co-ordinator for the 2000 March for Women, among other feminist organizations in which she has participated.
Pauline Rankin is a lesbian feminist who is a professor at Carleton University in the departments of Canadian Studies, Political Science and Women’s Studies. She served as a gender “consultant” with CIDA. Ms. Rankin is on the Board of Governors as a University Senate representative at Carleton University. She has spent her career writing on the feminist movement and gender issues.
Caroline Andrew has had a long career in the feminist movement. In 1984 she moderated the televised “women’s debate” during the federal election, in which all the party leaders participated. The televised debate was organized by the National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC). In 2007, Ms. Andrew was appointed by the homosexual Ontario Minister of Health, George Smitherman, chair of his department’s Women’s Health Agency. Ms. Andrew participated as moderator in a National Film Board documentary on women who kill their partners and argued such actions were in self defense.
The keynote speakers for this planned 2011 conference to date include feminists from India, the U.S.A. and Switzerland. The conference is open to those who are committed to women’s rights and equality and includes the Lesbian/Gay/Bi-sexual and Transgendered (LGBT), the two-spirited, as well as those who are “beautifully uncatagorizable” (providing of course they are in support of the feminist ideology).
According to its website, the Conference is to connect and reconnect around strategies and
political agendas so that “women’s equality and human rights may truly advance”.
The conference states that it will be dealing with injustices experienced by women because of globalization, colonialism, capitalism, imperialism and inequality, all of which lead to “women’s subjugation”. In truth, the conference is to organize a new feminist movement,
both in Canada and internationally.
REAL Women is encouraging Canadians to write to the Prime Minister Stephen Harper, to Stockwell Day, President of the Treasury Board, Rona Ambrose, Minister Responsible for the Status of Women, and to their own MP to request a permanent closing down the Status of Women.
The Right Hon. Stephen Harper
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A2
The Hon. Stockwell Day
President of Treasury Board
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
The Hon. Rona Ambrose
Minister for the Status of Women
House of Common
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
This article was originally published in the November/December 2010 Reality magazine of REAL women of Canada