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EV & Carleton University Team up to Launch "The Essential Guide to Being Elected: Increasing Women's Representation"

May 27, 2015

 

 

Carleton and Equal Voice Team up on Guide to Getting Elected for Women

 

Carleton University and Equal Voice released a primer today called The Essential Guide to Being Elected aimed at increasing women’s representation in all three levels of government.

 

Packed with practical advice on everything from assessing readiness to run, mentors and personal strategies to social media, finances, nominations and assembling a team, the guide also includes a self-assessment exercise, pointers for developing a campaign strategy and fundraising tips.

 

``Running for office can be intimidating but we need many more women to consider jumping in,’’ said Clare Beckton, executive director of Carleton’s Centre for Women in Politics and Public Leadership. ``We wanted to encourage them by providing a roadmap for the process and reminding women that there are many role models out there who are often willing to help.’’

 

"This guide builds on EV’s comprehensive online campaign school, Getting to the Gate.  We know Canadians want more women on the ballot – and will vote for them, in spades. It is intended to ensure that aspiring female candidates go in as prepared as possible  and are connected with the right opportunities,” adds Nancy Peckford from Equal Voice. 

 

In an effort to boost the numbers of women on the ballot, Equal Voice plans to equip up to 5000 women over the next five years to run at all levels of government, and for all political parties.

 

On average, women comprise just 25 per cent of seats at the federal and municipal levels. Provincially, representation varies between 16 and 37 per cent. Provinces with the highest number of urban dwellers have the highest percentage of female legislators.

 

The country's largest English-speaking provinces – Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta – are now governed by women and they also have the highest percentages of women in their legislatures, ranging from 33 to nearly 37 per cent. The United Nations has said that a minimum of 30 per cent women is key if they are to exert a sustained and meaningful influence on the overall culture and policy outcomes of a legislature.

 

The new guide is a continuation of the collaboration between Equal Voice and Carleton University. In June 2014, both organizations launched a website featuring academic research that addresses the realities for women who aspire to political office and leadership positions. It is Canada’s first central online tool providing timely research to all those who need it, including women candidates and their supporters.

 

The website provides material in four main areas – elections, leadership positions, public opinion research and reform in electoral systems and institutions. It also promotes discussion among women with political experience regarding strategies to advance women’s participation in public office.

 

Canada ranks 55th in the world for its representation of women in elected office at the federal level. In the last election, 25 per cent of all elected MPs were women – a new high but well under the UN minimum threshold of one-third.

 

The under-representation of women in political public leadership has far-reaching implications for the nation’s challenges. Studies have shown that women tend to include more diversity of viewpoints in decision-making, have broader concepts of public policy and are more likely to be collaborative in trying to resolve differences of opinion.

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Merci également au gouvernement du Canada (Condition féminine et Patrimoine canadien) pour son soutien financier.