March 8th is International Women’s Day, a day to recognize and celebrate the achievements of women all across Turtle Island. It is especially important to recognize the unique experiences of Indigenous women and the strength and resilience they bring to their communities.
Indigenous women have long been subject to racism, sexism, and various forms of discrimination, both in so-called Canada and around the world. As a result, Indigenous women have had to fight for their rights and for the recognition of their unique culture in the face of injustice. On International Women’s Day, we must take the time to recognize the contributions of Indigenous women, as well as their strength in the face of adversity. We should also recognize the systemic barriers that Indigenous women face in accessing education, healthcare, and employment.
This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is Embrace Equity. On the topic, Carol McBride, the President of the Native Women’s Association of Canada, notes that “To embrace equity is to recognize the unique challenges Indigenous women and girls face and to work together to create a society where we can thrive. I strongly believe equitable inclusion in all decisions about our people is paramount to reconciliation.”
The Native Women’s Association of Canada recently launched the Change The Bill program, which advocates for the inclusion of an Indigenous woman on Canada’s $20 bill. To learn more about this initiative, click here.
Today, and every other day, we can do our part to make sure Indigenous women’s voices are heard. Investing in Indigenous-led initiatives and supporting organizations that are working to empower Indigenous women are just some of the ways we can make a difference. On this International Women’s Day, we stand in solidarity with women all across Turtle Island and recognize their contributions.