Statement by Minister Monsef on the Introduction on Legislation to Create the Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE)


October 29, 2018

Ottawa – The Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister of Status of Women, today issued the following statement on the introduction of the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2, which includes legislation to create the Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE):

“Our government understands that gender equality creates economic growth. In fact, according to McKinsey Global institute, we could add $150 billion dollars to our economy in less than a decade if we implement polices of fairness and equality. That is why, earlier this year, we tabled Canada’s first gender budget, Budget 2018 – Equality + Growth: A Strong Middle Class. It recognized gender equality as a driver of economic growth, and as a result included a commitment to bring in legislation to transform Status of Women Canada from an agency to an official department in the Government of Canada.

Today, we fulfilled that promise by introducing the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2 which seeks to establish in law the Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE), modernize and formalize the role of the department and its Minister, and make it less vulnerable to change without public debate.

If the legislation is passed, we will strengthen our capacity to advance gender equality and grow the middle class through policy, programming and support for equality-seeking organizations and community partners. It will preserve WAGE’s place as a centre of gender expertise, and expand its mandate for gender equality to include sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and promoting a greater understanding of the gender and diversity lens often known as Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+).

Since 1976, Status of Women Canada (SWC) has worked to promote equality for women and their full participation in the economic, social and democratic life of Canada by increasing women’s economic security and prosperity, encouraging women’s leadership and democratic participation, and ending violence against women and girls. WAGE will continue SWC’s legacy and have greater capacity to do this work that is essential to growing Canada’s economy.

Today, we celebrate this historic moment, as well as the many other measures included in Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2, that advance gender equality, including making gender budgeting a permanent part of the federal budget-making process, ensuring equal pay for work of equal value through proactive pay equity, and implementing the EI Parental Sharing Benefit, which supports a more equitable division of childcare in the home. These things are not just the right things to do, they are the smart things to do because advancing gender equality benefits everyone.”


Braeson Holland
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Status of Women

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