Government of Canada announces funding for Equal Voice to enable women to participate in politics

News release

December 7, 2022 – Ottawa, Ontario — Women and Gender Equality Canada

Systemic barriers, such as gender roles, stereotypes, and discriminatory attitudes and norms, prevent women from participating in politics. Promoting women in leadership and decision-making roles leads to greater gender equality and better social, economic, and political outcomes for all Canadians.

Today, the Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, announced up to $695,500 for Equal Voice to undertake a project that will ensure Canada’s legislatures emerge from the pandemic as more gender-sensitive institutions.

This 27-month project will aim to alleviate systemic barriers to women’s involvement in politics, notably by allowing women to participate in political life remotely when needed due to illness, family responsibilities, or other exceptional circumstances.

With chapters in many cities across Canada, Equal Voice is a multi-partisan organization dedicated not only to promoting the election of more women and gender-diverse candidates at all levels of government in Canada, but also to creating a political environment conducive to retaining women in politics.

The Government of Canada is taking action to provide access to rights and opportunities that are unaffected by gender, including by increasing women’s representation in senior appointments in the public and private sectors. Systemic change is required to achieve gender equality and a fairer and more inclusive society for all.


“We need to continue breaking down barriers and driving change that encourages and promotes more women in leadership positions. Congratulations to Equal Voice’s members and partners for the launch of this ambitious project. Everyone – including women, youth and gender diverse individuals – should have an equal and fair shot at success in politics, or any field they choose.”

The Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth

“Equal Voice is focused on alleviating systemic barriers to women’s involvement in Canadian politics. With this project funding, we will be able to create a political environment conducive to effectively recruiting and retaining women in leadership and decision-making roles, and provide women, in all of their diversity, with the support they need to succeed.”

Eleanor Fast, Executive Director, Equal Voice

Quick facts

  • The Canadian House of Commons currently has a record-high rate of women’s representation at 103 of 338 seats.

  • Canada ranks 59th worldwide in terms of women’s representation in national lower or single houses of parliament.

  • The year 2021 marked the 100th anniversary of the first woman being elected to the House of Commons. 

  • Women still represent only 30% of elected federal politicians, and provincially, representation ranges from 10% to 49%. Moreover, men who are elected tend to spend an average of three more years than women in the job.

  • Women and Gender Equality Canada has provided funding to Equal Voice since 2016. This includes almost $5.2 million to support a variety of projects, including Daughters of the Vote, which brings together women aged 18 to 23 from every federal riding in Canada to represent their communities and communicate their visions for Canada.  

Associated links


Johise Namwira
Press Secretary and Issues Manager
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth

Media Relations
Women and Gender Equality Canada

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