Monthly Archives: February 2011

Support the Act to Eliminate Poverty

You can support the Act to Eliminate Poverty with this petition: http://static.makepovertyhistory.ca/documents/BILL_C545_Petition.pdf

This is an old fashioned paper petition, not an electronic one like we usually ask you to sign. This petition conforms with House of Commons rules so that it can be presented in the House of Commons by Members of Parliament. There is a 15 minute period in the House of Commons Agenda every day for MPs to present petitions. MPs are honour bound by parliamentary tradition to present petitions from their constituents, whether they agree with the petition or not.

By asking as many MPs as possible to present this Bill C-545 Petition we can send a strong message to the MP and to Parliament that there are many voters in his or her riding and across Canada that care about poverty and want their government to take leadership to do something about it.

If this act is passed, the federal government would be required to develop a poverty reduction plan that includes reduction targets and timetables. It requires that the plan be developed with input from civil society groups and people living in poverty. The act also requires regular reports on progress.

Act now and urge your MP to support Bill C-545, an Act to Eliminate Poverty.

Unpaid Work and Canada’s Long Form Census

CFUW has released a new tool kit for clubs and members on the impacts of the recent changes to Canada’s long form census.

CFUW testified before the Standing Committee on the Status of Women at the House of Commons in November 2010 on the changes to the long form census. Canceling the mandatory long form census and removing questions about unpaid work will impact women’s equality and other equality seeking groups like immigrants, aboriginals and low income Canadians.

In this tool kit you will find information on the issue and ways you can get involved with your club, and your community.

To access the tool kit and other advocacy resources, click here.

Save Women’s Shelters in Afghanistan

The government of Afghanistan has recently introduced a bill that wrests control of women’s shelters in Afghanistan from the local Afghan women’s NGOs that have founded and run them, and transfers that control to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA). This bill could become the law of the land ANY DAY NOW.

If this bill becomes law:Women and girls seeking shelter will be required to plead their case before an eight-member Government panel, including conservative members of the Supreme Court and Ministry of Justice. This panel will determine whether a woman needs to be in a shelter or should be sent to jail or returned to her home (and her abuser).

Women will have to undergo “forensic” exams (virginity tests) to determine whether they have had sex and therefore committed adultery. The tests are medically invalid.

Once admitted to a shelter, women will be forbidden to leave. Their shelter will become their prison.

There is no discussion in the bill of women’s human rights, of the horrific abuse that most women in shelters have suffered and fled.  The bill discusses shelter food but not how women’s rights will be protected and justice achieved.

And perhaps worst of all, if any family member comes to claim her, even her abuser, she will be handed over to that person, in most cases to be subjected to the harshest retribution for shaming the family.

Read more and sign the petition here.

Child care can boost the economy

In the weeks leading up to the 2011 Budget CFUW would like to see  federal investment in a national child care program for families and to strengthen the economy.

Investing in child care provides the greatest economic benefit of all sectors of the Canadian economy:

  • Biggest job creator: investing $1 million in childcare would create 40 jobs: at least 43% more jobs than the next highest industry and four times the number of jobs generated by $1 million in construction spending.
  • Strong economic stimulus: every dollar invested in childcare increases the economy’s output (GDP) by $2.30. This is one of the highest GDP impacts of all major sectors.

Canadian governments have invested considerable amounts in infrastructure and construction industry stimulus during the past year. This study shows that investments in our social infrastructure, and especially in child care are critical and provide a much stronger economic boost.

To read more from our partners at CUPE, click here.

Civil society input for UN Women – Beyond 100 days

The Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW) was among the members of GEAR (Gender Equality Architecture Reform) that recently sent suggestions for UN Women’s priorities beyond 100 days. CFUW recommended the following:

  • Meet the Millennium Development Goals with an emphasis on: Primary education for all; Elimination of violence against women and girls; Women’s economic sustainability (to eliminate poverty); Adequate food, clean water, shelter; Access to health care ‐ with special emphasis on maternal and child health, combating HIV/AIDS, and universal access to vaccinations and mosquito nets to eliminate the spread of disease.
  • Implement UNSCRs 1325, 1820, 1882, 1888 and 1889 on peace and security for women and girls.
  • Focus on the achievement of the goals of the Beijing Platform for Action and CEDAW with attention to leadership development for women.

Read the rest of this post where it was originally posted:  http://www.ifuw-forums.org/blog/2011/02/09/civil-society-input-for-un-women-beyond-100-days/

IFUW February 9 2011 Update

9 February 2011
New IFUW Programme for Action

We are pleased to announce the launching of the new IFUW Programme for Action (PfA) –
“The Power of Education in Effecting Change”.

The development of the PfA has involved our members through the on-line discussions and the input that was given during the conference in Mexico City. These ideas and suggestions have been “fine-tuned” by the Status of Women Committee, the members of which the Board wishes to thank for their hard work and innovative ideas.

The new PfA has four pillars or themes:

  • Education for empowerment and leadership
  • Education for freedom from violence
  • Education for financial independence, employment and entrepreneurship
  • Education for sustainable futures

These themes of the four pillars will form the basis of IFUW’s ongoing programme, one expected to last beyond the current triennium.

At the beginning of December 2010, we presented the cross-cutting focus chosen for IFUW’s international advocacy: “Education for the realization of the rights of women and girls”.  We hope that each national federation and association (NFA) will integrate all or part of the new PfA into their own programming and advocacy.
Marianne Haslegrave, IFUW President

What’s New on the IFUW Website

  • IFUW Programme for Action –  http://www.ifuw.org/programme/
  • This section provides suggestions for subthemes and action for the new PfA. We encourage you to check back often, as the Status of Women Committee will be posting new material regularly.
  • CSW 55th Sessionhttp://www.ifuw.org/programme
  • If you would like to know more about what will be happening at the 55th CSW Session, this page provides links to the key background documents, information about events IFUW is helping to organize, as well as a list of our delegation.
  • New IFUW Blog postinghttp://www.ifuw.org/blog
  • Ardith Toogood, CIR of the Canadian Federation (CFUW), is  guest blogger this week on Civil society input for UN Women Beyond the First 100 Days.  She shares input that CFUW has made to the new UN Women consultation process.

Bina Roy Partners in Development (BRPID)
2011 Competition Underway

IFUW’s BRPID Programme is now accepting project proposals for the 2011 competition.  The deadline for applying is 28 February 2011. BRPID supports projects empowering women and girls through education and leadership development.  NFAs in developing countries with a per capita gross national income (GNI) of 10,000 USD or less are encouraged to apply.  The grants, ranging from 1000 to 2000 Swiss francs, will be awarded on a competitive basis and will cover a twelve-month period beginning 1 June 2011. The Projects Committee is delighted with the response and is looking forward to reviewing the proposals in March.

Participants in the successful 2010 BRPID Literacy Project run by the Egyptian Association
Young Women, Bright Stars

In a recent message to the IFUW Member’s Network, Michelle Imison shared an idea young members in Australia are trying.  After the conference in Mexico, and with the sense that other women’s organizations must be having the same difficulties as our NFAs in maintaining and growing our membership, she went home and made contact with the ‘younger’ chapters of UNWomen (then still UNIFEM) and Business and Professional Women in Sydney.  She hopes they can build mutually useful relationships and networks into the future – and they’re starting with a joint event on International Women’s Day, March 8th. It’s an evening, cocktail-type event with a speaker, lucky door-prize and raffle and lots of networking opportunities. They’re deliberately keeping ticket costs low (finger food and some drinks are included), but they still hope to have money left to split three ways for the three organizations’ women’s and girls’ education projects.  They are calling their event ‘Young Women, Bright Stars’.  This is an idea that young members in other countries could also try.
Michelle Imison, Young Member, Australia
Convener, IFUW Projects Committee

International Federation of University Women
10 rue du Lac, 1207 Geneva, Switzerland
www.ifuw.org ¦  ifuw@ifuw.org

IFUW Update – 9 February 2011

 9 February 2011
New IFUW Programme for ActionWe are pleased to announce the launching of the new IFUW Programme for Action (PfA) –
“The Power of Education in Effecting Change”.

The development of the PfA has involved our members through the on-line discussions and the input that was given during the conference in Mexico City. These ideas and suggestions have been “fine-tuned” by the Status of Women Committee, the members of which the Board wishes to thank for their hard work and innovative ideas.

The new PfA has four pillars or themes:

  • Education for empowerment and leadership
  • Education for freedom from violence
  • Education for financial independence, employment and entrepreneurship
  • Education for sustainable futures

 

These themes of the four pillars will form the basis of IFUW’s ongoing programme, one expected to last beyond the current triennium.  

At the beginning of December 2010, we presented the cross-cutting focus chosen for IFUW’s international advocacy: “Education for the realization of the rights of women and girls”.  We hope that each national federation and association (NFA) will integrate all or part of the new PfA into their own programming and advocacy.
Marianne Haslegrave, IFUW President

What’s New on the IFUW Website

  • IFUW Programme for Action –  http://www.ifuw.org/programme/
    This section provides suggestions for subthemes and action for the new PfA. We encourage you to check back often, as the Status of Women Committee will be posting new material regularly.
  • CSW 55th Sessionhttp://www.ifuw.org/advocacy/csw2011.shtml
    If you would like to know more about what will be happening at the 55th CSW Session, this page provides links to the key background documents, information about events IFUW is helping to organize, as well as a list of our delegation.
  • New IFUW Blog postinghttp://www.ifuw.org/blog
    Ardith Toogood, CIR of the Canadian Federation (CFUW), is  guest blogger this week on Civil society input for UN Women Beyond the First 100 Days.  She shares input that CFUW has made to the new UN Women consultation process.
Bina Roy Partners in Development (BRPID)
2011 Competition Underway
IFUW’s BRPID Programme is now accepting project proposals for the 2011 competition.  The deadline for applying is 28 February 2011. BRPID supports projects empowering women and girls through education and leadership development.  NFAs in developing countries with a per capita gross national income (GNI) of 10,000 USD or less are encouraged to apply.  The grants, ranging from 1000 to 2000 Swiss francs, will be awarded on a competitive basis and will cover a twelve-month period beginning 1 June 2011. The Projects Committee is delighted with the response and is looking forward to reviewing the proposals in March. 
 Participants in the successful 2010 BRPID Literacy Project run by the Egyptian Association
 
Young Women, Bright StarsIn a recent message to the IFUW Member’s Network, Michelle Imison shared an idea young members in Australia are trying.  After the conference in Mexico, and with the sense that other women’s organizations must be having the same difficulties as our NFAs in maintaining and growing our membership, she went home and made contact with the ‘younger’ chapters of UNWomen (then still UNIFEM) and Business and Professional Women in Sydney.  She hopes they can build mutually useful relationships and networks into the future – and they’re starting with a joint event on International Women’s Day, March 8th. It’s an evening, cocktail-type event with a speaker, lucky door-prize and raffle and lots of networking opportunities. They’re deliberately keeping ticket costs low (finger food and some drinks are included), but they still hope to have money left to split three ways for the three organizations’ women’s and girls’ education projects.  They are calling their event ‘Young Women, Bright Stars’.  This is an idea that young members in other countries could also try.
Michelle Imison, Young Member, Australia
Convener, IFUW Projects Committee
International Federation of University Women
10 rue du Lac, 1207 Geneva, Switzerland
www.ifuw.org ¦  ifuw@ifuw.org