Join the panel discussion on women and gender equity

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To celebrate the launch of the City’s first ever Women and Gender Equity Strategy, the City will host a virtual panel discussion on the strategy’s outcomes and priorities – and we’re asking you to participate. Join us for this important conversation on Friday, May 28 from 9 to 11:30 am.

In addition to promoting the strategy and bringing focus to women and gender-diverse perspectives, this will be an opportunity to educate. We’ll discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women and gender diverse people, as well as priorities of the strategy and highlight the City’s commitments to address women and gender needs and gaps.

Our guest speaker will be Anjum Sultana, the National Director of Public Policy and Strategic Communications at YMCA Canada. Ms. Sultana was named a Global Woman of Distinction by the NGO Committee on the Status of Women, representing North America and Europe. Several community leaders will join Ms. Sultana to offer insights, including panelists from City for All Women Initiative, the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership, the Ontario Disability Employment Network and the City of Ottawa.

You’ll also hear remarks from Councillor Theresa Kavanagh, Council Liaison for Women and Gender Equity, Donna Gray, General Manager of the City’s Community and Social Services department, and Valerie Turner, General Manager of the City’s Innovative Client Services department.

If you’re interested in registering for the discussion, you can sign up for the panel through Eventbrite. The deadline for registration is Wednesday, May 26 at 4 pm.

To learn more about the Women and Gender Equity Strategy, watch this video or visit www.ottawa.ca/wges.

City Council approved the strategy on April 14. It outlines how the City will integrate gender equity in all its processes, services, strategies and policies. The City is committed to removing the systemic barriers that women and gender diverse people face and to ensuring equitable access to all City services.

The strategy focuses on four outcomes: policy change, safety, equitable representation and gender inclusivity. The first phase will run through 2022 and key actions include prioritizing women as part of a housing blitz, piloting free menstrual products, hiring from equity-deserving groups, and reviewing policies on sexual and gender-based harassment and violence.

During this phase, the City will train and educate staff on gender equity, and will review and standardize the safety and security of all City workspaces and facilities. We recognize that public health crises affect women and girls disproportionately, which is why the strategy also integrates gender equity into the City’s COVID-19 response and recovery planning.

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