International Women’s Day 2016: Pledge for Parity


Every March 8, HEU joins hands with the global community to celebrate women’s achievements and advocate for women’s social, economic and political equality. International Women’s Day 2016 marks a call for action to achieve gender parity.

“As a social justice union, HEU has a proud history of fighting for women’s equality in every area of their lives – whether it’s in our workplaces, at the bargaining table or in our communities,” says secretary-business manager Jennifer Whiteside.

That’s why HEU is committed to ending gender-based wage discrimination, defending women’s rights, and supporting women’s leadership.

In 2014, the World Economic Forum predicted that it would take until 2095 to achieve global gender parity. But in 2015, they estimated that the current slowdown now means that the gender gap won’t close entirely until 2133.

There’s still a significant gap between women’s and men’s earnings and fewer leadership opportunities are open to women. Because progress toward gender parity has slowed in many places, this year everyone – women and men – can pledge to take concrete steps to help to achieve gender parity more quickly.

Some of the pledges you can make include calling for gender-based leadership, challenging conscious and unconscious bias, and helping women and girls achieve their ambitions.

Make your pledge.

First observed in 1911, International Women’s Day is now a national holiday in many countries. Canadian trade unions, progressive organizations and community-based groups continue to both celebrate the achievements of women and press for more social justice and equality.

HEU joins CUPE National, the Canadian Labour Congress and other labour organizations in a collective fight for economic and social changes for the benefit of all women. These changes include improvements to the Canada Pension Plan, policies and supports to address the impact of domestic violence in the workplace, and a National Child Care program.