The Government of Canada invests in engaging men and boys in gender equality 

News release

The Government of Canada invests in engaging men and boys in gender equality

August 16, 2019 – Calgary, Alberta – Women and Gender Equality Canada

Gender equality benefits everyone—if we are to build a stronger and more prosperous country, we need to ensure that everyone has a real and fair chance to succeed. Men and boys are an important part of the discussion.

Across Canada there are thousands of men and boys joining the cause for gender equality; men working to achieve equality in the workplace, young men and boys learning about consent and healthy relationships, and academics researching evidence-based approaches to gender equality. We must continue to “call men in” to the movement for gender equality.

Today, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality announced that the Government of Canada is investing in four promising projects to engage men and boys in gender equality:

  • Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters will receive $212,000 to promote sports figures as role models to increase awareness of gender-based violence and healthy masculinity working with the Canadian Football League in the lead up to the 2019 Grey Cup.
  • Catalyst Canada will receive $100,000 to promote workplace inclusion and support men as disrupters of sexism in the workplace.
  • FOXY will receive $125,000 to engage Indigenous youth, particularly young men and boys, on gender equality in the Northwest Territories.
  • Next Gen Men with the University of Calgary will receive $125,000 to build networks and spaces for pro-feminist male leaders to engage among themselves and with feminist/women’s organizations on gender equality-related issues.

At today’s announcement, Minister Monsef also released Calling Men and Boys In – What We Heard: Report from the Roundtables on Engaging Men and Boys to Advance Gender Equality, which will help inform the development of a strategy to continue the engagement of men and boys in advancing gender equality. This report, and each of these projects, will advance what we heard from men and boys across the country, and demonstrate why advancing gender equality not only benefits everyone, but is also up to everyone.


Everyone has a part to play in advancing gender equality. That’s why the Government of Canada has been expanding its work to call in support from men, boys, and people of all gender identities and expressions, who also feel the impact of harmful, outdated gender stereotypes and have a role in ensuring we have safe workplaces, healthy relationships and supportive communities. By enlisting men and boys as allies and advocates in the women’s and gender equality-seeking movements, we’re working together to create a more equal and prosperous Canada for all.”

The Honourable Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P.
Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality

“Canada will be a world leader through the development of a dedicated engagement with men and boys, and bringing them into the movement to advance gender equality. The work being done by organizations like the Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters, Arctic SMASH, Catalyst, Next Gen Men and the University of Calgary will make a real impact in the lives of young men and boys in Canada, and will create space for difficult and necessary conversations that lead to the advancement of gender equality.”

Terry Duguid
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Women and Gender Equality

“We believe in a world free from violence and abuse. Thanks to this funding from the Government of Canada, we’re taking important steps with men and boys to redefine and reimagine what masculinity can be and to promote healthy relationships based on equality and mutual respect.”

Jan Reimer, CEO
Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters 

“We thank the Government of Canada for this important investment in our work to create a safe space where young men can learn and define masculinity for themselves – not based on outdated stereotypes. We’re proud to help these young men become a positive part of a healthy community that supports equality and respect for all.”

Dr. Candice Lys, Founder and Executive Director

“For women to advance in the workplace, we must work to dismantle the biases and cultures that pose barriers to their success. Thanks to this federal investment, we can bring men into the conversation to ensure that workplaces are healthy and inclusive to all – regardless of gender, race, ethnicity or sexual orientation.”

Tanya van Biesen, Executive Director
Catalyst Canada

“We are excited to partner with the Government of Canada to advance gender equality via the engagement and mobilization of men and boys from coast to coast to coast. Our goal is to nurture and support more men and boys to become agents of change in advancing gender equality.”

Jake Stika, Founder
Next Gen Men

Quick facts

  • Canada is a world leader in the advancement of gender equality through the development of a dedicated engagement with and boys to further this important work.

  • Budget 2018 announced $1.8 million over two years to develop a strategy to engage men and boys that promotes equality and pilots innovative, targeted approaches to addressing inequality.  

  • Between June and September 2018, over 200 individuals participated in nine roundtables across Canada, representing a wide diversity of perspectives and life experiences, sectors and professions.

  • Between 2009 and 2014, 13% of police-reported sexual assault victims were male. Among them, half were aged 13 or younger.

  • Women are at a 20% higher risk of violent victimization than men, when all other risk factors are taken into account.

  • Only 4% of Canadian CEOs and only 10% of top executives in Canada are women.

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Associated links


Braeson Holland
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality

Valérie Haché
Senior Communications Advisor
Department for Women and Gender Equality

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