On March 3, CUPE 3911 Co-chairs Glynnis Lieb and Dougal MacDonald joined proudly in Edmonton’s annual march and rally for International Women’s Day (IWD). About 300 people from many different groups and organizations participated in the celebrations, ignoring the falling snow and chilly weather. The march, replete with colourful banners, started at Corbett Hall at 112 St and Whyte Ave on the University of Alberta campus, continued along Whyte Avenue on the street, and ended at Old Strathcona Performing Arts Centre on Gateway Boulevard south of Whyte Avenue. At the Arts Centre, food, speakers, and a cultural program awaited, including a wonderful performance in support of Korean reunification by the talented Korean group, Arirang. The program ended with everyone singing of “Bread and Roses”. On Sunday, March 11 there was a follow-up lunch and forum at Haweli Restaurant.
The fight waged by women and girls to affirm their rights is courageous, inspiring and decisive in the fight for the rights of all. Women are also playing a leading role in the work to renew the democratic process. Indigenous women and their families deserve special commendation. Their voices rise ever louder against the conditions which permit their mothers, sisters, children, grandmothers and aunts to be murdered and disappeared. It is the voices of the women which represent this political power at this time. No number of attempts to silence them or to hand over the fate of women and girls to others have silenced this voice which is getting stronger and stronger. Once again it is the women who are inspiring all members of the polity to take up social responsibility to do whatever is required to open society’s path to progress.