B.C. gender-equality groups get federal cash

Media diversity initiative among projects to get funding

Status of Women Minister Maryam Monsef in Vancouver on Friday. The Canadian Press.

A project to increase diversity in Vancouver’s news media is among seven gender-equality initiatives in B.C. that have received $2.2 million in federal funding.

The Multilingual Orientation Service Association for Immigrant Communities, or MOSAIC, says the project will address issues including discrimination, stereotyping and lack of representation of female experts.

Studies suggest male experts are interviewed by the media far more often than female experts, said Ayesha S. Chaudhry, a MOSAIC leader and a UBC associate professor in Islamic and gender studies.

“It’s really important that we have a diversity of voices, not just in terms of gender, but class, sexuality and race, so that the people who are watching the news see themselves represented and their concerns and their perspectives are also captured,” Chaudhry said.

The project will urge media to increase female representation and train women academics on speaking with reporters, she said. It will also develop a framework on reporting on violence against women.

Status of Women Minister Maryam Monsef and Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould announced the funding in Vancouver on Friday. Monsef has been travelling the country giving cash to groups working to advance the equality of girls, women and people who don’t conform to a specific gender.

“The greater purpose of this tour, for me, has been to hear from organizations and leaders on the ground how as a government we can be part of your success — how we can get out of your way, but catalyze the change that you are working towards each and every single day,” Monsef said.

Other groups to receive funding include the Ending Violence Association of BC, which will launch a project to improve the way workplaces respond to gender-based violence, and the Women Against Violence Against Women Rape Crisis Centre, which will work to improve the justice system’s response to sexual violence survivors.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould says she and the government of Canada have been working hard to strengthen public confidence in the legal system and address gender-based violence.

“We are unwavering in our commitment to ensure that survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault are accorded and treated with respect and dignity, the respect and dignity that they deserve,” she said.

The Minerva Foundation for BC Women aims to increase women leaders in the technology sector, while the Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology said it will work to improve gender diversity in the science, technology, engineering and math fields in Vancouver.

Society president Fariba Pacheleh said the goal is for workers in these industries to be judged on the basis of their skills, not on their gender, skin colour, accent or physical appearance.

The aim is for an average woman to be able to advance at the same rate as an average man, she said.

“I’m not talking about brilliant women,” she said. “I’m talking about ordinary people.”

Laura Kane, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Chilliwack prolific offender wanted yet again

B.C.-wide warrant issued for David Allen Geoghegan

One man, two women charged with stolen pickup downtown Chilliwack

None of the three have criminal history in B.C.

COLUMN: Should elected officials block constituents and reporters on social media?

Ottawa mayor was sued for doing that but a Chilliwack school trustee didn’t get that message

Chilliwack-Hope MP says new summer jobs grant application no longer includes ‘values test’

Those with anti-abortion beliefs left out last year because of requirement to respect the Charter

Ask the Coach: Chilliwack Chiefs bench boss Brian Maloney talks shootouts

Ask the Coach is a bi-weekly feature where Maloney gives unfiltered answers to fan questions.

VIDEO: U.S. Congress to probe whether Trump told lawyer Cohen to lie

At issue is a BuzzFeed News report that about negotiations over a Moscow real estate project

Rookie Demko backstops Canucks to 4-3 win over Sabres

Young Vancouver goalie makes 36 saves to turn away Buffalo

Charges upgraded against mother of murdered B.C. girl

Kerryann Lewis now faces first- rather than second-degree murder in the death of Aaliyah Rosa.

UPDATE: Injured firefighter in stable condition

Kelowna fire crews responded to a blaze at Pope’sGallery of BC Art & Photography on Friday

Book a ride on a driverless shuttle in Surrey or Vancouver

Automated vehicle demos are being offered, as the two cities plan pilot projects with the shuttles

Heavy snowfall expected on the Coquihalla

Snowfall warning in effect for the Coquihalla Highway, from Hope to Merritt

Rare ‘super blood wolf moon’ takes to the skies this Sunday

Celestial event happens only three times this century

Arrest made after historic B.C. church hit by arson

The fire at the 150-year-old Murray United Church in Merritt was considered a possible hate crime

Missing man from Crowsnest Pass could be in Lower Mainland

58-year-old Stuart David Duff was last seen on Jan. 6, 2019.

Most Read