This project on Leadership, Feminism and Equality in Unions in Canada explores the current climate and attitudes to women, feminism, leadership and equality in Canadian unions through the insights, voices and experiences of women union leaders, activists and staff in Canadian unions.
Undoubtedly unions in Canada have played a significant role in promoting women’s equality. And many share the optimistic belief that organized labour can continue to play a critical part in challenging women’s inequality. Yet evidence suggests that equality issues have still not moved into the mainstream of union culture. Some even point to a backlash, suggested by the decline in women’s participation in leadership, fewer resources for equality organizing, and in some cases, outright attacks on advocates. These are disturbing trends.
Union women fought hard for equity gains over the past five decades. In the current climate of recession, cutbacks, and austerity, are we now losing ground?
We hope to bring together a community of women activists from across unions to engage in strategic discussions on how to move forward, and to develop initiatives for action.
Project organizers: Linda Briskin, Sue Genge, Marg McPhail and Marion Pollack