• Time Out: Child care fees in Canada 2017

    As rising fees push child care out of reach, families are scrambling for stopgap solutions including settling for unlicensed child care options or having one parent stay home because they can’t afford to return to work… This study… reveals the most and least expensive cities for child care in Canada… [with] an annual snapshot of median parental child care fees in Canada’s 28 biggest cities for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers… the study also includes child care fees in selected rural areas.

  • It’s time to invest more in universal child care

    Studies of the Quebec model have shown it pays for itself with economic benefits. In fact, 40 per cent of the cost is recovered in income and payroll taxes alone… the OECD ranked Canada, which overall spends about 0.34 per cent of GDP on child care programs (a figure, let’s not forget, that is boosted by Quebec’s investment), dead last out of 25 countries for quality and accessibility… It’s time Canada joined Quebec and other OECD countries in prioritizing the care of our most precious resource: children.

  • Here’s the gender gap that matters

    “Men have increasingly become the second sex in higher education,” … What’s clear from these trends is that educational inequality has worked its way up from elementary school, and is now solidly entrenched at all levels of attainment. This, in an age when higher education and cognitive skills are more important than ever… Higher education has become so feminized that it’s hard to see how it can be re-engineered to appeal to men.

  • Justin Trudeau has unfinished business after Supreme Court pick

    Martin is bilingual and has been at the forefront of arguing in favour of women’s rights before the courts. She is also known as an advocate for increasing the representation of minorities — including Indigenous people — in the legal profession and the courts… it is high time to see an Indigenous judge on the Supreme Court and the longer it takes the more pressing the demand will be.

  • Stop debating age and actually teach us about consent

    We need to learn that consent can be affected by power dynamics, the influence of substances and perceived safety. In order for us to feel safe and empowered in our decisions, conversations must be constant and reflective of our experience. Education has to start young, acknowledging that consent is not only mandatory for sex but also for any kind of healthy relationship… So, we have to keep talking about it, a thousand times over, until things start to change.

  • Paving way for more women in workforce would boost economic growth, report says

    … the burden of unpaid care work, gender discrimination and violence, a lack of legal protection and reduced access to financial services… Removing those barriers could boost OECD growth by between 6 per cent and 20 per cent… “It’s about the sheer scope for growth — 6 per cent is what we arrived at for advanced economies; for emerging market countries it’s even higher… So why aren’t we going for it?”

  • Let’s hope Canadian courts see the true meaning of the niqab

    The higher value of “social cohesion” has twice guided rulings against challenges to niqab bans by the European Court of Human Rights, which noted that the religious duty for women to cover was “hard to reconcile” with the principle of gender equality. Let us hope that our judiciary agrees and rules accordingly.

  • New family care policies provide more flexibility, but for whom?

    … because they continue to be based on the Employment Insurance (EI) system, the benefits may actually not be affordable to many… these levels of payments may actually not be a living wage and therefore may only benefit people at the higher income levels. In best practice Nordic countries, people get around 80 per cent of wages while on leave… most Canadians will not truly benefit from the greater flexibility provided.

  • Ottawa should do better on improving parental leave

    It’s difficult enough to sustain a household for 12 months under the current rules; doing without a full income for even longer will be a struggle for many… Second, it’s still extraordinarily difficult for parents who are working part-time or in other precarious work to access the EI parental leave program… third… Ottawa amended the Canada Labour Code for federally regulated workplaces… But that covers only 8 per cent of workers.

  • Senate backs down from standoff over Indian Act amendment

    An amended bill that aims to rid the Indian Act of all its sexist elements has been approved by the Senate despite senators’ expressed concern that the government has given no timeline for removing one of the most contentious areas of discrimination… Its passage will mean the rules governing the transfer of Indian status from one generation to the next, which have favoured men over women for more than a century, will become gender-neutral.