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Trudeau Pledges $650 Million to Women

Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minister and an avid supporter of women and gender equality, has vowed to spend $650 m on women’s reproductive health services and sex education around the world.

In 2015, Trudeau became the first Canadian Prime Minister to introduce a gender-balanced cabinet, with 15 women and 15 men. He has already demonstrated just how important he believes gender equality is and has stated his hopes that one day it will not be “rare or remarkable” for men to declare themselves feminists. Not only does Trudeau believe that gender equality is something all politicians should strive for, he also believes that we need more women in leadership positions.

The Prime Minister made his announcement to pledge over $600 m for women’s reproductive initiatives during an event in Ottawa that took place on International Women’s Day. Not only will the fund work to improve women’s healthcare and sex education, it will also tackle issues like female genital mutilation, forced marriage, gender-based and sexual-based violence, and post-abortion care.

During his speech, Trudeau talked about some of the issues that women and girls face all around the world, like sexual violence, poverty, and forced marriage. These women and girls are often denied education and the ownership of their own bodies. Trudeau said, “This is not only a tragedy; it is a missed opportunity for many countries that could benefit greatly from the economic contributions of women.”

Trudeau continued, “Like men, women should be able to choose when they want to start a family, how big their family should be, and who they want to start that family with. When women have equal power and equal weight and equal leadership influence, the kinds of decisions are better.”

“My friends, our ambitions can’t be bounded by our borders. Women and girls around the world are counting on countries like Canada to help lead the way.”

Canada’s Prime Minister is committed to preventing risky abortions, providing choices for women, and improving women’s health. “For far too many women and girls, unsafe abortions and lack of choices in reproductive health mean that they are either at risk, and at risk of death, or simply cannot contribute or achieve
their potential through education, through involvement in their community, through a broad range of opportunities,” he

Trudeau believes that this pledge is a step in the right direction for true gender equality and empowering women everywhere. He said, “It is important that as a world we recognize that empowering women, that respecting their rights, is fundamental to building a world in which everyone has a real and fair chance to succeed.”

Featured Image by John McCallum on Flickr
Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)

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