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Today, March 8, is International Women’s Day (IWD), established in 1911. We continue the fight for a world that is equitable, just, and safe for all women, girls, and gender non-conforming people.

2SLGBTQ+ rights wouldn’t be where they are without 2SLBTQ+ women, we honour the labour of Black and Indigenous women, women of colour, trans women, and gender-nonconforming people. So many historical events in the fight for our liberation were led by queer and trans women, who continue to lead in the fight towards justice.

Our communities have rallied for years with chants like “END THE VIOLENCE”. They are still relevant to this day. We see a violent rise in misogyny, where women’s rights and bodies are under attack by policymakers, where gender-based violence is diminished, and a growing culture of transmisogyny and trans-exclusionary beliefs worldwide. Canada is not immune to this violence.

Misogyny is the belief that men and masculinity are better than women and femininity. Transmisogyny is the way trans women and gender non-conforming people on the spectrum of femme expression experience misogyny.

People don’t fit into boxes as easily as transphobic extremists would like you to believe, and people with transphobic beliefs use gender-based fear-mongering to spread hate against trans women and gender non-conforming people.

These actions hurt all women: Women of all body types and expressions. These false ideologies perpetuate the patriarchy and gender-based violence. Nobody wins when we go down these roads.

There is no wrong way to be a woman.

Every woman is unique, beautiful, and strong. They are more than sisters, mothers, daughters but human beings deserving of equity.

IWD is a time to listen to the calls of leaders seeking gender equity and take up action. Every day, we must remember the advocacy and contributions of women in all fields and all expressions. We know there is space for us all and together we uplift every woman so that their ideas, voices and strength shine.

This International Women’s Day let’s all commit to feminism that is intersectional, anti-racist, and trans-inclusive. Let’s call out misogyny so that we can all be free.

Commit to fight for the safety and equity of all women, girls, and gender-diverse people, always.

In rage and solidarity, for a violence-free world.

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