This year, the theme for International Women’s Day is “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.   International Women’s Day (IWD) is held every year on March 8th.

It is a global celebration and it was established by women, for women to celebrate women’s achievements.   It also has the goal of bringing attention to women’s rights and gender parity in the social, cultural, economic and political arenas.

Some people ask if we still need International Women’s Day and the answer is a resounding YES!  According to the World Economic Forum, gender parity will not be attained for almost a century.  Sadly none of us will see gender parity in our lifetimes nor will many of our children.  There's urgent work to do - and we can all play a part.  There have been and will continue to be tremendous efforts by women and girls all over the world as they fight this pandemic.

Here is some information taken from “A YMCA Feminist Recovery Plan for Canada”

Women, Two-Spirit and gender-diverse people are at the forefront of Canada’s pandemic response

And women need to be centered in Canada’s economic recovery efforts going forward. 56% of women workers are concentrated in occupations known as the 5Cs: caring, cashiering, catering, cleaning and clerical functions. Many of them are the essential workers folks call heroes, but neglect to provide protection or benefits.

Women have also borne the brunt of the economic losses. Within Canada, in March 2020, women represented 70% of all job losses in the core demographic aged 25 to 54 years. 1 in 5 women workers lost their jobs or the majority of their hours in February and March.

Instead of giving in to the urge to cut government spending, now is the time to invest in communities hardest hit by the pandemic.

View the full plan at

In Solidarity,

Jodi MacPherson and Lynda MacLellan, NVPs for Women’s Issues, Canada