This week we will celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th. The Nova Scotia Federation of Labour and our Women’s Committee will post something each day this week in celebration. Each day in our province and country, women are making a difference. Women are building and resisting in the streets, at the ballot box, and within their unions. It saddens us that some 57 women and their achievements in being elected to school boards across Nova Scotia will see their voices shut down with Bill 72. This move is from a government that says it wants to see more women elected.
The activism of our sisters makes a difference and we have much to do when we push the McNeil government for paid domestic violence leave. We believe they will introduce legislation on domestic violence leave, but it will be unpaid at this point. When we work collectively, across our diversities, we are a force that makes the change and we can get paid leave by working together.
International Women’s Day gives us the opportunity to reflect on progress made and strategize for our future. Now that the federal government has paid domestic violence leave days, that gives us strength and we have witnessed the enduring strength of women in the streets advocating for political change.
We see the world changing as women rise up at mass demonstrations like the Women’s Marches and at the #MeToo rallies. Our NSFL Women’s committee is there front and center at those women’s events and we will remain strong and continue the fight in the streets and in our legislatures. We will join the Fight for $15 in our province and stand up to achieve change to lift women up and move them out of poverty with our battle for equal pay for equal work. We pushed this government back seven seats in the last election and we will remain a powerful force at the ballot box. Our women’s committee will continue to fight for public child care and early learning and of course for better protections against sexual harassment.
On this International Women’s Day, we celebrate the power of all women and invite women from all walks of life to join with us and demand justice and dignity for all Sisters.
In solidarity, Jackie Swaine, Chair, NSFL Women’s Committee