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Equal Voice in Washington, DC

May 12, 2014

 

 News Release


Monday, May 12, 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
Equal Voice Goes to Washington, DC 
 
Washington, D.C. - Raylene Lang-Dion, National Chair, and Lynne Hamilton, Vice Chair, of Equal Voice: Electing More Women in Canada (www.equalvoice.ca) are in Washington from May 12-16, 2014 for discussions with American counterparts on electing more women in politics.
 
As part of the U.S. State Department's International Visitors' Leadership Program (IVLP), Equal Voice delegates along with five other Canadian women working in the political field will meet with more than 20 high-level American political thinkers to discuss their respective countries’ best practices for electing women, and to share their insights into how to effectively tackle historical political barriers. 
 
“This is a real opportunity to hear – and learn - from a number of experienced and well respected thought leaders on the very important issue of electing more women,” said Lang-Dion. “While there has been considerable international emphasis on ensuring a more equitable number of women in democratic institutions, there is also increased acknowledgement that women are still underrepresented politically. Both of our countries are faced with similar challenges. Equal Voice very much looks forward to the lessons that come out of our discussions this week.
 
Equal Voice is Canada’s only national, bilingual, multi-partisan organization dedicated to electing more women to all levels of political office in Canada.  Equal Voice regards the equal representation of women in Canada's Parliament, in provincial/territorial legislatures, and on municipal and band councils, as a fundamental question of fairness for women in terms of their access to Canada’s democratic institutions. 
 
 
 
Quick Facts:
  • According to the World Inter-Parliamentary Union, Canada ranks number 55 and the United States ranks number 84 on the international listing of countries and their percentages of elected women.
  • In Canada, 25% of the 308 seats in the House of Commons are held by women – a historic high for the nation. 
  • The United Nations says that a critical mass of at least 30% women is needed before legislatures produce public policy representing women's concerns and before political institutions begin to change the way they do business.
  • There are common barriers to women’s political participation the world over including socio-economic obstacles, stereotyping of women’s role and abilities; media imbalances in the treatment of women politicians; and a rampant sexist perception of women’s conduct and behaviour.
 
Web Links:
 
Social Media links:
Equal Voice @EqualVoiceCA
Raylene Lang-Dion @RLangDion
Lynne Hamilton @Hamilyn 
 
 
Media Inquiries:
Equal Voice
Nancy Peckford
1-613-292-7941
Joan Weinman 
1-613-294-5679
 
U.S. Embassy Ottawa
Jennifer Young
1-613-688-5315
Youngjm1@state.gov
 
 

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Thanks also to the Government of Canada (Status of Women & Canadian Heritage) for their financial support.