News Release Article from  Status of Women Canada

Canada renews commitment to advancing gender equality globally at United Nations

March 14, 2016 – Ottawa, ON – Status of Women Canada

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Status of Women, is leading the Canadian delegation to the 60th session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW), beginning on March 14, 2016 in New York. The focus of the UNCSW this year is women’s empowerment and its link to sustainable development.

During the session, Minister Hajdu will deliver the Head of Delegation statement underscoring the renewal of Canada’s commitment to advancing gender equality globally, preventing gender-baqsed violence, particularly against Indigenous women and girls, and ensuring the rights of women and girls are protected.

Canada will co-host a series of side event discussions on critical issues affecting women and girls such as ending gender-based violence, the rights of Indigenous women and girls and sexual and reproductive health and rights. Ministers will also undertake bilateral discussions with their international counterparts.

Minister Hajdu will be joined on the Canadian delegation by her colleagues the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, the Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, and Anju Dhillon, Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women.

Canada’s delegation also includes the following representatives of provincial/territorial governments and non-governmental organizations:

  • The Honourable Elaine Taylor, Minister responsible for Status of Women, Yukon
  • The Honourable Caroline Cochrane, Minister responsible for Status of Women, Northwest Territories
  • The Honourable Tracy MacCharles, Minister responsible for Status of Women, Ontario
  • The Honourable Lise Thériault, Deputy Premier of Québec, Minister responsible for Status of Women
  • The Honourable Joanne Bernard, Minister responsible for Status of Women, Nova Scotia
  • Saman Ahsan, Executive Director, Girls Action Foundation
  • Amanda Dale, Executive Director, Barbra Schlifer Clinic
  • Shauna Fontaine, Violence Prevention and Safety Coordinator, Southern Chiefs Organization
  • Dawn Lavell-Harvard, President, Native Women’s Association of Canada
  • Lise Martin, Executive Director, Canadian Network of Women’s Shelters and Transition Houses

Quick Facts

  • Each year’s UNCSW session includes a review of the progress made on an issue or issues that were the focus of an earlier session of the Commission. This year’s review theme is the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls, which was the focus of the 57th session.
  • The Government of Canada is embracing its international roles and responsibilities with a renewed sense of purpose. This includes ensuring Canada remains a world leader in the promotion and advancement of gender equality, and the full realization of the human rights of women and girls.


“This year’s Commission on the Status of Women gives Canada the chance to renew its commitment to advancing gender equality, and protecting women’s rights around the world. Canada will be a leader on priority issues for women and girls such as reducing and preventing gender-based violence, promoting their sexual and reproductive health and rights, ensuring access to justice, and proudly empowering young women. Canada will stand up for women’s rights at home and abroad and today we reclaim our place at the UN as a key advocate on the global stage.

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Status of Women


Erik Mistal
Special Assistant
Office of the Minister of Status of Women

Nanci-Jean Waugh
Director General, Communications and Public Affairs
Status of Women Canada

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