It’s time to get with the times … International Women’s Day 2012

Happy International Women’s Day everyone! I’m seeing lots of love for the ladies on my Twitter feed today. It’s great to see everyone recognizing the many contributions women make in their homes, their communities, their careers and the world in general.

International Women’s Day is recognized by citizens around the world to celebrate past progress towards equality for women, reflect on the challenges women continue to face and consider what action we can take in the future to ensure girls and women achieve equality in all aspects of their lives.

While women have made great strides in today’s world from where we were in the 1950’s, we still face challenges in many parts of our lives. This is why we must continue to take action on women’s issues.

From working to prevent family violence, to promoting women’s education in non-traditional careers, to ensuring pay equality, to mother’s rights in the workplace Alberta, Canada and the world still have great strides to make.

Alberta’s Famous Five ,Emily Murphy, Louise McKinney, Nellie McClung, Irene Parlby and Henrietta Muir Edwards paved the way for women’s rights. They did not let adversity or circumstances deter them from fighting for equality. We need to continue this pursuit of equality, because let’s face it. Anything men can do, women can do too.

It’s disheartening to see issues such as pay inequality and mothers rights in the workforce still in the news. Regardless of how I feel about it though it’s still happened. Today the Edmonton Journal published an article reporting that in Alberta, disparity in pay equity shows women working full-time in the province earn 68 per cent as much as men. 68 per cent!!That means that despite the fact that I worked my ass off in university, and had a higher GPA than my male counterparts, they will still make 32 per cent more than me. We need to fix this ladies!

Also in the recent past, two women (here and here) who work in politics were chastised by another party member for bringing their still breastfeeding infants to a  meeting/vote. In this day and age, when little boys and little girls alike are being told that when they grow up they can do anything, and be anything they want to be, why are we still limiting women to a choice between career and family? We can do both and we can do it well. Until the day comes that men can push a baby out, women are going to be left with that job. So it’s about time that people just get over it, realize that women are fully capable of juggling both work and career, and get over their fear of breastfeeding in public. It’s just a boob guys, it won’t bite!

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