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Happy International Women’s Day 2013

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On this day of celebration for all the achievements of women, I want to pay a special tribute to all of OPSEU’s women leaders, activists and members.

International Women's Day is an important opportunity to celebrate women’s achievements in OPSEU as well as throughout history and across nations. We also look forward to future opportunities that lay ahead for women and girls.

This year’s Canadian IWD theme from the Status of Women is “Working Together: Engaging Men to End Violence against Women”. Violence against women does not discriminate against race, creed, disability or socioeconomic status. It is important for everyone, men and women, to work together to eliminate this form of violence and encourage healthy relationships as well as promote gender equity.

OPSEU has been a strong advocate for gender equity with continual advancements in pay equity for our female members. We strive for equal pay for work of equal value. OPSEU has also joined the global campaign against gender violence, which brought awareness to the fact that violence against women is a violation of human rights.

In November 2013, we will be holding our biennial OPSEU Women’s Conference. This great event will bring together over a hundred and fifty members, predominately working women, from across Ontario. The goal of the conference is to empower women, and this will be an opportunity for our OPSEU activists to become even stronger.

I invite all OPSEU members to support women and women’s issues by getting involved in our communities and participating in local or global events.

Our OPSEU Provincial Women’s Committee is an important strength of this union, and I want to acknowledge their contribution to the advancement of the rights of women in workplaces across the province as well as within our union. Together we are strong.

In solidarity,

Smokey Thomas

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