Women and Gender Equality Canada mandate
The mandate of Women and Gender Equality Canada (WAGE) is to advance equality with respect to sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression through the inclusion of people of all genders, including women, in Canada’s economic, social, and political life. This application of a gender and diversity lens will help us to understand better the intersection of sex and gender with other identity factors. These factors include but are not limited to race, national and ethnic origin, Indigenous origin or identity, age, sexual orientation, socio-economic condition, place of residence and disability.
WAGE works within the context of a number of federal and international instruments that support the principle of gender equality such as: the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian Human Rights Act, the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), and the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
WAGE’s responsibilities include the following:
- supporting the development of a National Action Plan on Gender-Based Violence
- leading the implementation of Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+) across the federal government and working to improve the quality and scope of GBA+ in future budgets
- implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action and the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls’ Calls for Justice in partnership with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples
- providing expert advice and strategic support to federal departments and agencies in the development of policies, programs and legislation related to gender equality, including gaps in health research and care
- sharing research and policy expertise with the organizations and other levels of governments that have the levers to address gender equality issues
- sustaining funding commitments to Canadian women’s organizations and equality-seeking groups, including supporting community action to tackle systemic barriers that perpetuate gender inequality
- supporting the creation of more accessible and affordable childcare and access to housing that is affordable and meets the needs of Canadian women and girls
- supporting Canada’s efforts to meet international obligations on promoting gender equality abroad
- promoting commemorative dates related to gender equality
A Canada where people of all genders, including women, are equal in every way and can achieve their full potential.
WAGE works to advance gender equality through an intersectional gendered lens. Working in partnership with key stakeholders, including civil society organizations, labour groups, the private sector, other orders of government, and First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, we actively promote the inclusion of all people in Canada’s economic, social, and political life. WAGE works to uphold its mandate to advance gender equality by performing a central coordination function within the Government of Canada by developing and implementing policies, providing grants and contributions, delivering programs, investing in research, and providing advice to achieve equality for people of all genders, including women.
Since 1971, there has been a Minister responsible for the Status of Women. The Office of the Coordinator, Status of Women, was initially established in the Privy Council Office in response to a recommendation contained in the report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in 1970.
The Office of the Coordinator, Status of Women, became a departmental agency of the federal government on April 1, 1976.
In December 2018, new legislation created Women and Gender Equality Canada, transforming the former Status of Women Canada into an official department of the Government of Canada. This change modernizes and formalizes, in law, the roles of the Minister and the Department.
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