On this day, the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, the AFL demands action on gender inequality in Alberta
Edmonton - On this day, the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, we need to face the facts about how prevalent gender-based violence and misogyny continue to be, thirty years after the massacre.
“Thirty years ago, a gunman murdered 14 women at the École Polytechnique de Montréal simply because they were women,” Alberta Federation of Labour secretary treasurer Siobhán Vipond said. “This type violence is not just the product of one man’s rage, it is the product of a society that undermines the value of women. We need a cultural shift towards equality if we are ever going to combat violence against women.”
Alberta has one of the largest gender wage gaps in Canada at 17.6 % with men making on average $6.32 more per hour. The situation is worse for women with disabilities, immigrants, and Indigenous women.
Alberta also has one of the highest rates of domestic violence in Canada. The Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters has reported an alarming increase in severity of violence reported to shelters. Nearly two thirds of women who used the Danger Assessment tool when accessing shelters in Alberta were at a ‘severe’ or ‘extreme’ risk of being murdered by their intimate partner. This is the highest risk level seen in the past eight years.
“Gender inequality is still very prevalent in Alberta and the current UCP policies are making the situation worse for many women. The Kenney government is suppressing wages, cutting jobs and risking workers’ pensions in female dominated industries such as health care and education. Additionally, the UCP cut important child care grants for families that allowed women to attend school and jobs on a part-time basis with no consultation,” said Vipond
“This UCP government needs to be using evidence-based analysis with a gender lens to ensure women and LGBTQ2+ Albertans are not being discriminated against in their policies. Violence against women is a manifestation of gender inequality.” said Vipond. “We need to work towards equality to end this violence.”
Director of Communications
Alberta Federation of Labour