Woman’s Day: sadly, the fight for equality continues: Our View

We say: We’ve come a long way but we still have further to go

Yesterday we once again recognized the women in our world on International Women’s Day.

Sure, we recognize them every day. They are our mothers, sisters, daughters, friends and colleagues.

So if we recognize them every day, do we still need an International Women’s Day?

Hasn’t it pretty much been accepted that we need equality between the sexes? That women deserve the same rights as the rest of us?

Yes. The answer to all those questions is yes.

Granted, we’ve come a long way since the United Nations invited their member states to proclaim March 8 as the official UN Day for Women’s Rights and World Peace in 1977, but women are still, throughout the world, well behind men in terms of their rights and privileges.

Even here in Canada, where we value women’s equality much more than some other places around the world, federal Status of Women critic Sheila Malcomson issued a statement yesterday saying we need to do even better.

And she’s right.

“Indigenous women are still seven times more likely to be murdered than non-indigenous women. Poverty rates among single mothers and senior women are increasing and women continue to make only 77 per cent of what men earn for work of equal value,” reads Malcomson’s statement, before calling for the government to play “a crucial role” in advancing gender equality by creating strong social programs, “including access to affordable housing, childcare, healthcare, and legal aid.”

Those are things that benefit us all, whether we are women – who are still harassed, assaulted and abused at far higher rates than men – or not.

So, yes. International Women’s Day is still important.

Because in making the world a better place for women, we make the world a better place for everyone.

And don’t we all want to live in a better world?