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Statement by The Prime Minister of Canada on International Women’s Day

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the occasion of International Women’s Day:

“Today, I join Canadians and people around the world in celebrating women – mothers, sisters, daughters, grandmothers, friends or simply those that we admire and respect. We applaud their courage, leadership, strength and compassion, as well as their endless contributions to our families, our economy, our country and our world.

“Canada’s theme for International Women’s Day 2015, Strong Women, Strong World, highlights the vital contributions that women make to the domestic and global economy. It also underscores Canada’s commitment to ensuring that every woman has the opportunity to participate fully in society, generating economic and social benefits for themselves and their families.

“Our Government has taken a number of actions to ensure safer communities for Canadian women and their families. For instance, we launched the Action Plan to Address Family Violence and Violent Crimes Against Aboriginal Women and Girls, and have strengthened our justice system by passing the Protecting Victims from Sex Offenders Act, to protect all Canadians, including women, from repeat, violent or sexual offenders; by passing the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, to protect children from sexual exploitation; and by introducing the Victims Bill of Rights Act, to give victims of crime a more effective voice. We also introduced the Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act, which aims to protect girls and young women from early and forced marriage.

“Internationally, Canada continues to be a global leader on improving maternal, newborn and child health in developing countries. The world has seen significant progress since 2010 when Canada brought this critical issue to the forefront of the world’s attention by launching the Muskoka Initiative on Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH). Canada further galvanized global action toward saving the lives of mothers and children in some of the world’s poorest countries by hosting the Saving Every Woman, Every Child: Within Arm’s Reach Summit in 2014. This Summit brought together Canadian and international partners to ensure that MNCH remains a central global development priority beyond 2015.

“Canada will continue to promote the human rights of women and girls both at home and on the international stage.

“On this special occasion, I encourage all Canadians to take the time to thank the remarkable women who have influenced their lives and show them the appreciation they so richly deserve.”

PMO Press Office    3/8/2015


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