Luncheon Speaker, Ellen Fraser
Sponsor Feature: NS Advisory Council on the Status of Women
It’s an obvious fit: The Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women (NSACSW) and
The NSACSW have provided valuable advice and support to Techsploration since inception in 1998; the assistance of their staff on the Program Advisory Committee has helped shape Techsploration into the program it is today.
“The full participation of women in economic opportunities is critical to economic independence. In Nova Scotia, we want women to be able to achieve their highest potential, in all areas of their lives including in the areas of work and vocation,” says Stephanie MacInnis Langley, Executive Director at the Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women. In 2012, 50% of Nova Scotia’s labour force are women where 74% are employed full‐time and 26% part‐time in various fields and sectors.
One group of pioneers are women entering the fields of science, engineering, trades and technology. “They may be the first in their families and communities to enter these fields. They are leaders today, and are mentors for future generations in professions where women have been traditionally underrepresented. Achieving gender equality is key. We want to attract, retain, and advance more women in these fields. We want to foster a diverse community where all women are inspired to dream, and to pursue and develop their skills and talents in any field without barriers or roadblocks.”
Since 1977, the NSACSW educates the public and advises the provincial government on issues of interest and concern to all women in Nova Scotia. They work to make sure that issues affecting the lives of Nova Scotia women become part of the government’s plan to advance equality, fairness and dignity for all women in the province. Their four intersecting priority areas are: women in leadership; women’s economic security; freedom from violence against women and girls; and women’s health and wellness. They collaborate with government, community and academia in all of their work, and their continued support of Techsploration over the past 10 years is a great example of how the NSACSW supports women’s rights through economic inclusion.
“The program is beneficial to many young women,” continues MacInnis‐Langley. “We are strong supporters of engaging, inspiring and supporting young women in their exploration and journey of economic independence.”
Additional work focusing on young women is the inaugurating year of International Day of the Girl on October 11, 2012, where the NSACSW partnered with its Atlantic colleagues to launch cybersafegirl.ca. This is a bilingual website focused on internet safety for girls between the ages of 11‐18. A joint initiative of the Atlantic Ministers responsible for the Status of Women in Canada, the site features tips and tools for parents and youth on staying safe while using the internet and social media. It also includes Our Family Online Safety Agreement, a contract between family members providing rules and guidelines for safe internet use.
Also on the International Day of the Girl, the NSACSW sponsored the Girls Run the World workshop, a one‐day, arts‐based event celebrating being a girl. Sixty young women attended the event that encouraged healthy identities, respectful interpersonal relationships, and explored self‐expression through spoken word, crafts, video and dance. Hosted by community volunteers, and led by Nicole Landry (a local researcher and videographer) and the Avalon Sexual Assault Centre, a video of event highlights was produced and can be seen on the NSACSW homepage.
Check out their website for more information about their programs and services, or visit their public library at Suite 202, 6169 Quinpool Road Halifax to check out books, journals, newspaper clippings, statistics and fact sheets, as well as NSACSW publications.
Atlantic Canada Ministers Responsible for the Status of Women announced the Cybersafe Girl project at MacDonald Drive Junior High in St. John’s. MacDonald Drive Junior High Student, Jennifer Mong, launched the Cybersafe Girl website with (L‐R) the
Honourable Valerie E. Docherty, Prince Edward Island’s Minister Responsible for the Status of Women, and Minister of Community Services and Seniors; the Honourable Marilyn More, Nova Scotia’s Minister Responsible for the Status of Women, Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, and Minister of Immigration; the Honourable Charlene Johnson, Newfoundland and Labrador’s Minister Responsible for the Status of Women and Minister of Child, Youth and Family Services; and New Brunswick’s Legislative Secretary Pam Lynch, representing the Honourable Marie‐Claude Blais, Minister Responsible for Women’s Issues, Minister of Justice and Attorney General ‐ October 11, 2012. (attached photo and caption attributed to: http://www.releases.gov.nl.ca/releases/2012/exec/1011n01pic2.htm)