#Gender Rights and Issues
The City of Winnipeg, the Province of Manitoba, the Canadian Government

Starting in March 2010, the women's movement and its allies will take to the streets in Manitoba and across Canada to defend demands to combat poverty and violence against women. This is in solidarity with the World March of Women, which, for the third time, is calling on women around the world to take action between March 8 and October 17, 2010, under the theme of "Women on the March Until We Are All Free!"

In accordance with the Women's Global Charter for Humanity, we are striving, not only for equality for women, but also, for a world of peace, justice, freedom and solidarity for all. Below are our demands reflecting a broad vision of the issues affecting women and society in general.


- Women and Work: Women's Economic Autonomy -
- Urgent Anti-Poverty Measures -

We demand that the minimum wage be increased to $10.66 per hour so that minimum wage workers who work 40 hours per week can earn an annual income equivalent to the low-income cut-off before taxes established by Statistics Canada for single persons.

We demand the abolition of the social assistance categories ("capable" and "incapable" of working) to combat prejudice and guarantee all people a minimum income that covers their essential needs and ensures their personal dignity. This amount should be automatically indexed every year.

We demand that the Canadian Government reinstate Pay Equity. The right to equal pay for equal work is not a bargaining matter.

We demand the establishment of free, localized, culturally and linguistically sensitive training centres for women to attain skills and knowledge in order to attain higher paying jobs.

- Common Good and Access to Resources -

We demand an end to the privatization of public services and the common good (water, telephone, energy, transit, education, health) and we oppose any rate increases for these services.

We demand access to clean water, adequate and affordable housing. We demand that the Government of Canada provide and pay for drinkable water and sanitization in First Nations communities; provide and pay for housing that is safe and meets the need of the First Nations communities.

We demand that the Canadian government establish a national childcare program, on and off reserve, where quality childcare is accessible and affordable for all parents.

- Violence Against Women as a Tool to Control Women's Bodies -

We demand that Crimestat and Winnipeg Police Services restore the original definition of sexual assault that includes those assaults perpetrated by someone known to the victim. We believe that finding holistic and effective solutions to domestic and sexual abuse begins with being given accurate information.

We demand that the Manitoban and Canadian government implement practical measures for preventing and combating violence against women, particularly the hypersexualization and commodification of women's bodies, starting with:
- Legislation on advertising practices;
- Sex education courses with an egalitarian and non-sexist approach.

We demand that the Canadian government guarantee women's inalienable right to choose whether to have children, which means the maintenance and consolidation of free and accessible abortion services provided by public and community networks and the development of new public services in inadequately covered areas.

We demand that all levels of government provide adequate funding for women’s organizations, shelters and programs that work in the field of Violence Against Women including those on-reserve in First Nations communities, specifically:
- Temporary housing
- Transition housing
- Training opportunities
- Culturally, linguistically and ethnically appropriate supports and services for women escaping violent and exploitative relationships

We demand the decriminalization of sex work in Canada. We know that sex work is NOT inherently violent or exploitative. However, sex workers are being raped and many have been killed. Because sex workers are criminalized by the systems that protect other Canadians, they are denied access to legal recourse that would deter clients, pimps and police from continuing this violence against them.

- Peace and Demilitarization -

We demand that the Manitoban government prohibit military recruitment in all Manitoban educational institutions.

We demand that the Canadian government immediately withdraw its troops from Afghanistan.

- Rights of Aboriginal Women-

We demand that Canada sign the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and guarantee the rights referred to therein, with particular attention paid to the rights of Aboriginal women and children.

We demand that the government of Manitoba standardize K-grade 12 education on-reserve, off-reserve, for rural and urban Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students.

We demand that the Manitoba Integrated Taskforce for Missing and Murdered Women respond promptly, effectively, accountably and with transparency to the unsolved cases of homicide involving women and missing-persons files involving women.

We demand that the Canadian Government fully fund the Sisters in Spirit initiative through the Native Women’s Association of Canada. First Nations women must be the leaders in resolving the national shame of missing and murdered Aboriginal women. Aboriginal women are the experts.

We, the undersigned, are petitioning the City of Winnipeg, the Province of Manitoba and the Canadian Government to make effective and meaningful changes to our political, social and economic structures that will improve the lives of women and society as a whole by meeting the above demands.

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The Winnipeg Demands for IWD 2010 petition to The City of Winnipeg, the Province of Manitoba, the Canadian Government was written by FemRev and is in the category Gender Rights and Issues at GoPetition.