• Ontario budget to fund free child care for preschoolers as part of $2.2B plan

    Premier Kathleen Wynne has unveiled free child care for preschoolers in a $2.2 billion budget boost that is the cornerstone of the Liberals’ spring re-election platform… “If we don’t do something to give more women the choice to return to work after having kids and do it on their own terms then we will never achieve gender equality.” The government will also introduce a provincial wage grid for chronically low-paid child-care workers by 2020 to bring early childhood educator wages up to the level of those in the school system.

  • Why women’s votes matter now

    … women have so many concerns – gender violence, pay equity, the lack of and the cost of childcare, job insecurity, the state of schools, to name just a few. Because we experience these issues on a personal level, we don’t always connect them to political decisions. But we need to do that, and here are three reasons why: Budgets matter… Representation matters… Women’s Power matters…

  • A civil election campaign is vital to encourage women in politics

    History has shown that it’s quite possible – maybe even easier — to get elected by appealing to selected sections of the electorate and exploiting humanity’s worst instincts. But it’s impossible to govern effectively that way, to build anything that endures, to use high office in the service of our best selves. It would stand as an impressive first act of leadership if all would-be premiers said, in their first statements, that they will run, and will demand from their own supporters, campaigns of civility and respect.

  • Justin Trudeau should not glibly dismiss universal programs

    There are understandable reasons to balk at the prospect of creating new universal programs. The start-up costs can be daunting and if Ottawa is to share the burden with the provinces, as it must, then it will have to wade into the forbidding fed-prov morass. Still, at least in the case of pharmacare, and arguably for daycare, too, the evidence is clear that both the public and the economics support a universal program. So why the opposition?

  • No equality without universal child care

    Today more than ever, it is evident that the lack of affordable child care remains a central barrier to equality for women with children… The first child care milestone dates back nearly 50 years, to when the Royal Commission on the Status of Women reported on its work… It’s now 2018, and women whose grandmothers greeted the Royal Commission’s report with high hopes still don’t have access to the affordable, high-quality child care it envisioned in 1970.

  • What does the federal budget mean for low-income Canadians?

    Perhaps the most significant aspect of the budget in terms of poverty reduction was the announcement that the Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB) would become the more generous Canada Workers Benefit (CWB). This change… works by topping up the incomes of working people… once wages exceed a certain threshold the amount decreases with each dollar earned until it reaches zero.

  • Ontario to introduce ‘pay transparency’ legislation

    If passed, the “pay transparency” bill would require all publicly advertised job postings to include a salary rate or range, bar employers from asking about past compensation and prohibit reprisal against employees who do discuss or disclose compensation. It would also create a framework that would require large employers to track and report compensation gaps based on gender and other diversity characteristics, and disclose the information to the province.

  • The federal budget is out. How does it measure up?

    This year’s budget takes some positive steps forward on gender equality and science funding, but comes up short on the bold policy moves that will make a real difference for Canadians—universal child care, pharmacare, health care, and tax fairness… when it comes to substantive action to advance a truly feminist agenda, we’re still waiting for the big investments required to build a more equitable and inclusive economy. Here’s some of what was missing from Budget 2018…

  • What is GBA+? The federal intersectional doctrine that governs everything now

    It’s not just gender. The symbol… illustrates all the other “identity factors” that make up GBA+. The whole point of the program is to ensure that bureaucrats aren’t designing tone-deaf programs that accidentally ignore whole swaths of the population… Effectively, it’s a series of checks to make sure that policy makers aren’t just designing programs for people who think and act like themselves.

  • Employment and Pay (In)equality: The Big Childcare Issue Unaddressed in the Budget

    … a bigger bang for the buck could have been achieved by addressing the more significant problem head on: the childcare expense deduction, which is of limited benefit for so many families and mothers. Transforming the deduction into an income-tested refundable benefit, as we have suggested, would induce thousands of mothers to join the workforce, for a likely smaller cost than what’s proposed in this budget.