Women in Politics: Moving from Barriers to Solutions
COPE 378, February 3rd 2012
This article, published by the Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union, discusses a recent seminar they put together to try to improve the rate of women who run for leadership positions, both within their unions, and within public life. They used Equal Voice research and data to corroborate some of their claims, and highlights how other groups are working with Equal Voice to improve the standing of Canadian women on the political stage.
Sleiman encourages greater role for women in politics
The Daily Star, February 1st 2012
This article by The Daily Star, a Lebanese newspaper, covers recent statements by Lebanese President Michel Sleiman urging women to take a more active role in politics. Sleiman is making a call for women in the region to improve their level of political activity. Sleiman also states that he hopes women will have full political rights within his term in office. This would seem to be a dramatic step forward for the country. What do you think?
The Fulcrum, February 5th 2012
The ever-dramatic SFUO elections were just this past week. Here is a run down of all the races in which a female candidate was running. Only one election this year lacked for female representation, and two were contested entirely be women. These articles let you know a little bit about each candidate, and what they intend (or intended) to do in office. Those of you interested by their preferred superheroes and villains can also check that out (because that’s how responsible citizens choose their representatives). In any case, the information is valuable for anyone who is looking for background on the winners and losers of this year’s election. Good luck to all the candidates going forwards!
House must be example of family-friendly workplace: women’s groups
Montreal Gazette, February 9th 2012
This article addresses the recent controversy about a mother and her baby being kicked out of the House of Commons. According to the report, Sana Hassaina, an NDP MP, had brought her baby to a HOC vote on the long-gun registry. Several MP’s had tried to take a picture with the baby, and Sana was kicked out by the speaker for causing a disturbance. The article calls for more understanding of the specific challenges that mothers must face in their political lives and questions how the decision reflects upon Canada’s reputation of treating women fairly.
Premier encourages women to enter politics
Bermuda Sun, February 6th 2012
This brief article addresses recent comments made by Bermudan Premier Paula Cox regarding the state of women’s politics in her country. According to her, many women are turned off by the “gotcha mentality” that is present in politics, and Cox wants to articulate that political life is often not the struggle it is portrayed as, and that fear of criticism is no reason not to enter politics. Cox addresses one of the major factors that keep women out of politics, and her words can be seen as a frank discussion of an ongoing problem.
CNN, February 8th 2012
This eye opening piece by CNN discusses the recent findings of Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker, who theorizes that women in power are more likely to be peaceful than men. Now, this stereotype is nothing new, but Pinker addresses it from a different angle, discussing the issue in terms of the growing prevalence of communication and collaboration as negotiating strategies which allows women to wield political power in a more traditionally feminine manner. Pinker argues that previously warlike female political leaders (like Margaret Thatcher) were at the disadvantage of having to fit into a “man’s world”, and theorizes that the increasingly network-dense political landscape will allow more women to get into power, and change the way they act within those roles. The article is an excellent read, and makes you think about the broader context of gender roles and leadership in the modern era.