art of three diverse people[Image from YWCA Canada's Feminist Recovery Plan]

YWCA Toronto Statement on 2020 Throne Speech

Throne Speech Brings Welcome News

September 23, 2020

Today’s throne speech put forth several historic commitments aimed at supporting women and addressing systemic racism in our country. In particular, the Government’s pledge to introduce an Action Plan for Women in the Economy and invest in a national child and early learning system is welcome news. We are also very pleased with the language of intersectional feminism informing the Government’s response to the pandemic.

We are hopeful that further announcements around child care will involve specific targets, timelines and dollar amounts. Canada needs a universal, publicly funded child care system so that everyone can access quality child care as needed – and to ensure the child care work force is paid a professional wage. Similarly, we look forward to understanding more about the action plan for women and how the government will specifically support women’s participation in the workforce.

We are also encouraged by other progressive announcements related to affordable housing – including the $1 billion municipal investment for people experiencing homelessness – reconciliation, and investment in the green economy. We had hoped for more robust income support measures but look towards further information on the transitional Canada Recovery Benefit.

We echo the concerns of sector partners about the treatment of undocumented and migrant workers who perform an essential role in our economy and contribute to the sustainability of our communities. We urge the Government to create expedited, low-cost and easy-to-access pathways to Permanent Residency for all precarious labourers in Canada, many of whom are racialized women.

In short, we look forward to seeing the Government’s roadmap to meeting the needs of Canadian women, supporting gender equality and addressing systemic racism – and we are keen to review the numbers in the fall economic update.

As a feminist non-profit connected to a larger movement, we will continue to organize with sector partners, our national office, and other YWCA Member Associations across the country for an intersectional, feminist she-covery.

About YWCA Toronto

YWCA Toronto is a leading feminist multi-service nonprofit. We help women escape violence, move out of poverty, and access safe affordable housing.