Deputy Minister Transition Binder 2

Overview of the Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE)

Table of content

Gender-Based Analysis Plus (GBA Plus)


Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA Plus) is an analytical tool used to support the development of responsive and inclusive policies, programs, and other initiatives. GBA Plus is a process for understanding who is impacted by the issue or opportunity being addressed by the initiative; identifying how the initiative could be tailored to meet diverse needs of the people most impacted; and anticipating and mitigating any barriers to accessing or benefitting from the initiative.  GBA Plus is an intersectional analysis that goes beyond biological (sex) and socio-cultural (gender) differences to consider other factors, such as age, disability, education, ethnicity, economic status, geography, language, race, religion, and sexual orientation.

Foundational GBA Plus training is available in both official languages to the general public through the course, Introduction to GBA Plus, on the Department’s website. This course is also available to public servants through the Canada School of Public Service’s learning platform as are other GBA Plus training opportunities.

Many sources of information about GBA Plus implementation have been analyzed helping to identify promising practices and where opportunities for improvement remain. Insights have been gathered through:

Current Status

Federal departments and agencies are currently required to integrate GBA Plus into all Memoranda to Cabinet, Treasury Board Submissions, federal budget proposals, and regulations. Further, GBA Plus is now included in key legislation, including, the Gender Budgeting Act, Impact Assessment Act, Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Accessible Canada Act. In addition, through annual Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports, all federal departments and agencies are required to apply GBA Plus to existing program expenditures. In April 2022, the Government of Canada made amendments to its policy on transfer payments that includes GBA Plus requirements in the design and implementation of grant and contribution programs.

Various governance structures have been put in place to support departments and agencies and ensure they remain accountable for their GBA Plus requirements. This includes a GBA Plus Champions Network, an Interdepartmental Committee of GBA Plus Focal Points, and Federal-Provincial-Territorial GBA Plus Task Teams. Further, capacity to undertake robust GBA Plus continues to grow and the availability of disaggregated data, which is essential to robust, analysis is increasingly available.

In April 2022, the Auditor General of Canada released their report of the performance audit of GBA Plus. This was  the third audit of GBA Plus , which looked at the extent to which recommendations from the Auditor Generals’ 2015 audit were implemented by WAGE, Privy Council Office (PCO) and Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS). 

Further, the audit examined the use and availability of data to support the conduct of GBA Plus. Findings from the audit report suggest that:

WAGE, PCO, and TBS are currently developing an Action Plan in response to the audit. To advance the work needed to address the audit recommendations and deliver on the mandate letter commitments, WAGE is currently working in close collaboration with departments and agencies who are identified as supporting the implementation of these mandate commitments, departments who are key delivery partners in GBA Plus within the federal government, and departments with equity and diversity mandates.

GBA Plus - Concrete Impacts on Policies, Programs and Services

GBA Plus and Airport Security

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) applied GBA Plus to the Primary Inspection Kiosks, which were created to improve border services for international travellers at Canada’s busiest airports. Throughout the planning phase, GBA Plus was used to inform the design and operation of the kiosk, to ensure that no group would be unfairly disadvantaged by the technology. GBA Plus was used to develop a mitigation strategy, where travellers with match scores below a requirement are subject to visual inspection.

GBA Plus and Health Research

Research has found that sex and, gender are key variables in explaining many health conditions. The Canadian Institutes of Health Research requires researchers who apply for funding to integrate GBA Plus into their research design.

GBA Plus and Climate Change

GBA Plus has been applied to key initiatives in Canada’s approach to climate change, as research shows that climate change impacts people differently depending on multiple intersecting factors. GBA Plus is being applied to the federal government’s climate initiatives, in order to maximize positive benefits for those most impacted by the negative effects of climate change, including low-income Canadians, women, Indigenous communities, and people living in rural and remote areas. GBA Plus has also been applied to Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy, in recognition that women living in poverty disproportionately experience the impacts of climate change.

Gender Budgeting


Studies by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have demonstrated gender gaps, for example, in labour market participation, entrepreneurship, remuneration, representation in senior management positions in both the public and private sectors, health outcomes, and education. As a means to address these gaps, countries (including Belgium, Finland, Iceland, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Spain, Sweden and others) have started to mainstream gender in their budgetary process. This is known as gender budgeting.

As a leader on the issue of gender budgeting, the OECD defines gender budgeting as “integrating a clear gender perspective within the overall context of the budgetary process, through the use of special processes and analytical tools, with a view to promoting gender-responsive policies”. This analysis allows the government to promote equality through fiscal policy and allocate resources accordingly.

Budget 2017 provided the first ever Gender Budget Statement and included information on the impact of current budget measures on diverse populations. Budget 2018 ensured that no budget decision was taken without being informed by Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA Plus). In addition, in Budget 2018, the Gender Results Framework (GRF) was introduced as a tool with which federal budget decisions were made and upon which the gender analysis of the annual budget would be based. Budget 2019 moved further by providing Canadians access to the Budget 2019 Gender Report, a publication of comprehensive GBA Plus summaries for each budget measure.  In Budgets 2021 and 2022 the practice of publishing GBA Plus summaries of all budget measures has continued.

In addition, the Canadian Gender Budgeting Act came into force in December 2018, enshrining gender budgeting in the federal government’s budgetary and financial management process. The Act has three key requirements:

1. Report — new budget measures

The Minister of Finance must table, before each House of Parliament, on any of the first 30 days on which that House is sitting after the day on which a budget plan is tabled in Parliament, a report on the impacts in terms of gender and diversity of all new budget measures described in the plan, if an assessment of the impacts is not included in the budget plan or any related documents that the Minister has made public.

2. Analysis — tax expenditures

Once a year, the Minister of Finance must make available to the public analysis of impacts in terms of gender and diversity of the tax expenditures, such as tax exemptions, deductions or credits that the Minister considers appropriate.

3. Analysis — programs

Once a year, the President of the Treasury Board must make available to the public analysis of impacts in terms of gender and diversity of the existing Government of Canada expenditure programs that the President, in consultation with the Minister of Finance, considers appropriate.

Budget 2022 included a Statement on Gender Equality and Diversity in Canada, as well as an Impact Report with the GBA Plus summaries of all budget measures. Finance Canada includes analysis of progress on the GRF indicators in the Budget’s Statement on Gender Equality and Diversity in Canada. As the Government of Canada’s centre of expertise on gender equality, WAGE works with Finance Canada on the implementation of the Canadian Gender Budgeting Act and the drafting of the Statement on Gender Equality and Diversity.

Early evidence of how GBA Plus is applied to budget measures suggests gender budgeting helps to ensure that budget measures are more responsive to the needs of diverse groups of Canadians. For example, below are two initiatives from federal Budget 2019 in which the budget noted that a “GBA Plus responsive approach” resulted in a more inclusive initiative:

Gender-Based Violence


While violence affects people of all genders, ages, religions, cultures, ethnicities, geographic locations,

and socio-economic backgrounds, populations more at risk of gender-based violence (GBV) include women and girls, Indigenous Peoples, Two-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual plus (2SLGBTQQIA+) + and gender non-binary people, those living in northern, rural, and remote communities, women with disabilities, Black and other racialized women, and younger women. 

There are currently four key plans/strategies that together form a coordinated approach to the Government of Canada’s response to GBV, or specific forms of GBV. Two are led by WAGE, while two are led by other government departments. These plans are detailed below:

Federal GBV Strategy

Following Budget 2017, the Minister for Women and Gender Equality launched It’s Time: Canada’s Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence (GBV Strategy, the Government of Canada’s response to GBV. It builds on current federal initiatives, coordinates existing programs and lays the foundation for greater action on GBV. While the federal GBV Strategy encompasses all federal initiatives to prevent and address GBV, seven federal departments and agencies received funding for specific initiatives: WAGE, Department of National Defense (DND), Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Public Safety (PS), Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), and Department of Justice (JUS).

Budgets 2017, 2018, and 2021 provided over $800 million, with over $44 million per year ongoing to establish, launch, and expand the federal GBV Strategy, although most of the Budget 2021 funding allocated to WAGE was related to emergency response in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The GBV Strategy’s initiatives are organized across three pillars:

To date, the Strategy has yielded a number of promising results and continues to advance initiatives/activities to prevent and address GBV.

National Action Plan to End Gender Based Violence

In December 2019, the Minister for Women and Gender Equality was mandated to build on the foundation laid by the federal GBV Strategy and move forward with the development of a National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence (GBV NAP).

At their 38th Annual Meeting held in January 2021, Federal-Provincial-Territorial Ministers endorsed the Joint Declaration for a Canada Free of Gender-Based Violence. Through this declaration, governments confirmed their common vision, principles, and goals for the development of the GBV NAP. This historic milestone represents a strong public commitment by federal and provincial and territorial governments to work together to prevent and address GBV across Canada. While Québec did not directly endorse the declaration, it has signaled its support for the general principles of the Joint Declaration and will continue to be active in the efforts to end GBV by prioritizing its own actions and measures.

The November 2021 Speech from the Throne and the December 2021 mandate letter both reiterated the federal government’s commitment to a national action plan. More specifically, the mandate letter directed the Minister to “move forward with the development of a 10-year National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence, begin negotiations with the provinces and territories within a year, and accelerate the establishment of a dedicated Secretariat.”

In December 2021, at their 39th annual meeting, FPT Ministers responsible for the Status of Women renewed their commitment and collaboration to advance towards a GBV NAP.

Budget 2022 announced $539.3 million over 5 years to enable provinces and territories to supplement and enhance services and supports within their jurisdictions to prevent gender-based violence and support survivors.

2021 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People (MMIWG2S+) National Action Plan and Federal Pathway to Address Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People

In response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Calls to Action, the Government of Canada launched the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (the National Inquiry) in 2016. On June 3, 2019, the National Inquiry released its Final Report, Reclaiming Power and Place, which included 231 Calls for Justice to be taken by federal, provincial, territorial, and municipal governments, institutions, social service providers, industry, and all Canadians – calling for transformative legal and social changes.

On June 3, 2021, to mark the second anniversary of the Final Report, the co-developed and Indigenous-led 2021 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People National Action Plan: Ending Violence Against Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People (MMIWG2S+ Action Plan) was launched.

The Federal Pathway to Address Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People (Federal Pathway), the Government of Canada's contribution to the National Action Plan was also released on this date. The Federal Pathway addresses four interconnected thematic areas: culture, health and wellness, human safety and security, and justice.

WAGE and Public Safety are co-leads for the human safety and security theme of the Federal Pathway.

Under this theme, WAGE is leading an initiative aimed at bolstering the capacity of Indigenous women's and 2SLGBTQQIA+ organizations to provide GBV prevention programming ($55 million over 5 years).

WAGE is working with Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada to ensure the GBV NAP and MMIWG2S+ National Action Plan are aligned and complementary.

National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is a highly gendered crime, and a form of GBV, as it disproportionately impacts women and girls, at-risk populations, as well as their families and communities.

On September 4, 2019, the National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking was launched, and takes a whole-of-government approach that includes a number of new and expanded initiatives. It aims to:

Through this National Strategy, WAGE is funding 41 projects for a total investment of nearly $14 million to develop, deliver and test empowerment-focused prevention and intervention promising practices for at-risk populations, victims, and survivors of human trafficking.



In 2018, the Government enacted the Department for Women and Gender Equality Act to create a federal department, with a dedicated Minister with the powers, duties and functions to advance equality, including social, economic and political equality, with respect to sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression (SSOGIE), and to promote a greater understanding of the intersection of sex and gender with other identity factors that include race, national and ethnic origin, Indigenous origin or identity, age, sexual orientation, socio-economic condition, place of residence and disability.

Building on the department’s mandate and to advance the government’s commitments on LGBTQ2 issues, Budget 2019 provided $20 million to help address the unique needs and persisting disparities among LGBTQ2 Canadians by investing in capacity building of Canadian LGBTQ2 community organizations. Further, Budget 2021 provided $15 million for a new LGBTQ2 Projects Fund dedicated to supporting community-informed initiatives to overcome key issues facing LGBTQ2 communities, such as accessing mental health services and employment support. 

On October 26, 2021, the Government of Canada issued an Order in Council to transfer the control and supervision of the LGBTQ2 Secretariat from Canadian Heritage to the Department for Women and Gender Equality.

The December 2021 Mandate Letter for the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth reiterated the government’s commitment to LGBTQ2 communities and mandated the Minister to launch the Federal LGBTQ2 Action Plan and provide capacity funding to Canadian LGBTQ2 service organizations. The Minister was also mandated to continue the work of the LGBTQ2 Secretariat in promoting LGBTQ2 equality at home and abroad, protecting LGBTQ2 rights and addressing discrimination against LGBTQ2 communities, building on the passage of Bill C-4, which criminalized conversion therapy.

LGBTQ2 Action Plan

Individuals from LGBTQ2 communities face many inequities compared to other members of society. These inequities are particularly evident in such areas as health, employment, housing and safety. To help address some of those inequities, several countries have implemented LGBTQ2 action plans at the national or regional level, including France (2020), Australia (2019), the United Kingdom (2018), Ireland (2018) and the Netherlands (2011). In Canada, at the provincial level, Quebec implemented its second Government Action Plan Against Homophobia and Transphobia in 2017 and Yukon launched its LGBTQ2S+ Inclusion Action Plan in 2021.

The development of a federal LGBTQ2 Action Plan (Action Plan) responds to calls from LGBTQ2 communities, experts, advocates, and Canadian and international organizations for Canada to take stronger action to address the inequities faced by LGBTQ2 individuals.

The Government of Canada undertook extensive engagement with 2SLGBTQI+ people, experts, advocates and civil society organizations to inform the Action Plan. To build a strong foundation of evidence for the development of the Federal Action Plan, the engagement process incorporated an intersectional approach, ensuring that the effects of racism, ableism, ageism, etc. experienced by LGBTQ communities were taken into account.

The engagement process focused on the following themes: health and well-being; employment and the workplace; safety and justice; housing and homelessness; and stigma, isolation and resilience.

Data was collected through various streams: an online survey collected responses from more than 26,000 LGBTQ2 individuals living in Canada; written observations from over 100 LGBTQ2 civil society organizations; and through seven roundtable discussions which took place with over 100 participants who shared their lived experiences, knowledge and expertise.

WAGE is working closely with its federal partners and stakeholders to finalize the Federal LGBTQ2 Action Plan. Building on the investments from Budgets 2019 and 2021, Budget 2022 proposed to provide $100 million over five years, starting in 2022-23, to support the implementation of the forthcoming Federal LGBTQ2 Action Plan, which will support a fairer and more equal Canada for LGBTQ2 Canadians.

Menstrual Equity Fund


Menstrual equity is the unhindered access to menstrual management products (ex. tampons, pads etc.), including access to water, sanitation and hygiene facilities, access to education materials on the topic, and the ability to discuss issues pertaining to menstruation without any fear or shame.

Period poverty, or menstrual inequity, is the inability to access menstrual management products due to financial limitations or other barriers. Marginalized populations such as refugees, those who are homeless, sex workers, trans and non-binary people, Indigenous communities, and people living in rural, remote, and Northern communities face additional barriers to accessing menstrual supplies and are at a greater risk of period poverty. Period poverty exists largely because menstrual products are expensive, with costs varying across regions in Canada. These expenses contribute to systemic inequality along the lines of sex and gender. For low-income people who use disposable menstrual products, this is a monthly expense that can place additional stresses on already tight budgets.

The Government of Canada is committed to advancing gender equality and promoting and upholding sexual and reproductive health and rights. Menstrual products are a basic necessity and are essential to upholding these rights. Unfortunately, too many women, girls, trans, and non-binary people in Canada struggle to afford these products. Lack of access to menstrual products makes it hard for people to fully participate in school, work, and other aspects of public life.

According to a 2019 Plan International Canada (PIC) online survey, 27% of Canadian women and girls surveyed reported having to occasionally sacrifice something else within their budget to afford menstrual hygiene products, and 8% reported having done so regularly. In another PIC Survey in 2020, 15% of young people reported having struggled to get period products, and 15% were worried about their ongoing ability to afford them.

On November 5, 2021, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services, committed that all students in First Nations operated schools on reserve and in federal schools across Canada will have access to free menstrual products. The 2021 mandate letter for the Minister of Labour reiterated the Government of Canada’s commitment to provide free menstrual products in federally regulated workplaces.

Current Status

Budget 2022 committed $25 million over two years to establish a national pilot for a Menstrual Equity Fund that will help make menstrual products available to those in need.

Women and Gender Equality Canada is working with key federal partners, engaging with the provinces and territories and reaching out to community organizations and experts across Canada to help develop this pilot. This engagement will inform the approach to rolling out the Fund and ensure that it reaches those who need it most.

Women and Gender Equality Programming


The Department has three sets of Terms and Conditions (Ts&Cs) through which the Minister can provide Grants and Contributions: Women’s Program, the Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Program, and the Equality for Sex, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression (SSOGIE) Program.

The Program accepts applications for funding through calls for proposals (CFPs) for projects to respond to identified policy issues, as well as on an ongoing basis in order to offer customized responses to emerging or pressing gender equality issues.

Women’s Program

Through the Women’s Program, WAGE invests in time-limited projects across Canada that address systemic barriers to gender equality in three priority areas: ending violence against women and girls; improving women’s and girls’ economic security and prosperity; and encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles. The objective of the Women’s Program is to achieve the full participation of women in the economic, social, and democratic life of Canada.

As of July 2022, for the 2022-23 fiscal year, the Women’s Program has funded 332 organizations. Funding recipients are primarily not-for-profit organizations, from local grassroots organizations to large national organizations.

Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Program

Established as part of It’s Time: Canada’s Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence, the GBV Program provides funding to organizations in the GBV sector to support the development and implementation of promising practices to address gaps in supports for survivors and their families.

As of July 2022, for the 2022-23 fiscal year, the GBV Program has funded 107 organizations. Funding is provided to eligible organizations in support of time-specific projects that address gaps in supports for specific groups of survivors, including Indigenous women and their communities and underserved populations, such as those who are more at risk of GBV and/or who are facing barriers to accessing services. These could include children and youth, racialized women, LGBTQ2 communities and gender-non-binary people, non-status/refugee/immigrant women, seniors, women living in an official language minority community, women living in northern, rural and remote communities, and women living with a disability.

Equality for Sex, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression (SSOGIE) Program

The Equality for SSOGIE Program supports action and innovation by investing in initiatives and organizations that work to bring about social, political, and economic equality in relation to sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression. The Equality for SSOGIE Program funds eligible organizations for time-specific projects that include activities such as partnership building, capacity building, and applied community research.

As of July 2022, for the 2022-23 fiscal year, the Equality for SSOGIE Program has funded 43 organizations.

Current Status

Budget 2021:

Budget 2021 committed $601.3 million over five years, starting in 2021-22, to advance towards the development of the National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence. This includes $415 million that was provided to WAGE:

Budget 2022:

Budget 2022 announced the following:

Research Overview


Women and Gender Equality Canada (WAGE) is mandated to advance equality with respect to sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression through the inclusion of people of all genders, including women, in Canada’s economic, social, and political life. A strong research program is necessary to support evidence-based policy and programming related to this mandate. To this end, the department undertakes, coordinates and commissions research, with a current annual envelope of approximately $12.2 million operating dollars to execute this function.

The department’s current research activities are grouped into five thematic priority areas:

Research projects are designed to support evidence-based policy and programs by governments, civil society organizations, private sector organizations and others working to advance gender equality in Canada, as well as to facilitate monitoring of progress towards gender equality in Canada. For example, findings from several of the department’s research projects on the prevalence and nature of gender-based violence in Canada, formed the basis of priorities in the development of the National Action Plan to End Gender-based Violence.  Further, in order to facilitate monitoring of gender equality in Canada, WAGE’s research team worked in collaboration with Finance Canada and Global Affairs Canada to develop a framework of goals and indicators (Gender Results Framework).

To carry out its research function, the department uses a variety of mechanisms, including in-house research, agreements with other federal departments, support to national research networks, and contracts to private industry, academics and other non-government organizations. One of the key partners of WAGE’s research program is Statistics Canada, who carries out targeted studies on behalf of WAGE, using their large data sets. The department also partners with Statistics Canada to conduct national surveys related to GBV. These surveys have resulted in some of the first-ever national snapshots of gender-based violence, and are informing policies and programs to prevent and address GBV in Canada.

Research products developed or commissioned by the department are shared using a breadth of mechanisms, including the department’s online GBV Knowledge Centre platform, Statistics Canada’s flagship publications and its Diversity and Inclusion Statistics Hub, as well as through written research summaries and presentations.

Intergovernmental Relations


Women and Gender Equality Canada (WAGE) plays an active role in supporting the Government of Canada’s priorities on gender equality through its intergovernmental relations with provinces and territories, which are all engaged in advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment.

This collaboration happens through the Federal-Provincial/Territorial (FPT) Forum of Ministers responsible for the Status of Women. The FPT Forum meets annually to share knowledge and information, and provides FPT Ministers with a collective and unique opportunity to lead and influence change on current and emerging issues related to women’s equality and the status of women, which can include gender diversity and gender equality, taking into account the varying scope of each Minister’s mandate.

In addition to annual meetings, ministerial meetings can also be arranged on an ad hoc basis to discuss key issues. Monthly FPT Senior officials-level meetings are held throughout the year to advance the annual agenda and work plan mandated by the Ministers.

To carry out the work set out at the annual FPT Ministerial Meeting, task teams made up of FPT officials are established and follow a three-year cycle. These task teams conduct their respective work/projects and report back to Ministers every year.

In order to strengthen engagement with Indigenous Peoples, the FPT Forum meets with National Indigenous Leaders and Representatives (NILRs) prior to their in-person Annual Ministerial Meeting.

Current Status

WAGE is the federal chair of the FPT Forum, and co-chairs with a provincial/territorial Minister Responsible for the Status of Women on an annual rotational basis. FPT Ministers last met in-person in December 2019 in Victoria, British Columbia.

The 2022 P/T co-chair is Nova Scotia, led by their Minister responsible for the Advisory Council on the Status of Women Act, Karla MacFarlane. As this year’s co-chair, Nova Scotia will host the 40th annual FPT Ministerial Meeting  in Minister MacFarlane’s riding, Pictou County, on November 7-9, 2022.

In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, FPT Ministers met virtually for their 38th (January 2021) and 39th (December 2021) annual meetings.

International Engagement


While gender equality is recognized internationally as a fundamental human right critical to a healthy society and a strong economy, gender inequality is pervasive and persists in every country.

The United Nations (UN) is the main multilateral body responsible for international human rights, including gender equality on a global scale, with the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action of 1995 serving as the guiding global policy framework and blueprint for action in support of equality for women and girls. Canada has a longstanding commitment to supporting gender equality internationally and domestically, including its work with the UN Commission on the Status of Women and UN Women.

Canada’s credibility internationally rests in large part on its domestic work and achievements, which is done in partnership with provinces and territories, Indigenous communities, as well as with Canadian civil society organizations, at home and abroad. WAGE is the federal lead on gender equality and supports Canada’s representation in key international fora and events.

Current Status

WAGE’s international engagement leverages Canada’s strengths to promote Canadian values, facilitate the advancement of gender equality, and support federal priorities. Its purpose is to advance Canada’s domestic gender equality priorities and demonstrate its leadership internationally through meaningful engagement.

WAGE’s International Engagement Strategy articulates how the Department, through its core engagement with multilateral and regional fora, and in collaboration with key international organizations and bilateral partners, works to advance the domestic gender equality agenda, through three objectives:

  1. Fulfill International Obligations and Reporting on Gender Equality:

    WAGE must fulfill Canada’s international obligations and reporting on gender equality and report on commitments (e.g., Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Beijing Declaration for Action and Sustainable Development Goal 5).

  2. Advance Canada’s Domestic Gender Equality Priorities and Demonstrate Leadership on Gender Equality:

    As Canada’s national women’s machinery, WAGE demonstrates leadership and influences progress to advance gender equality issues internationally, seeks gender equality research and data and exchanges on best practices through strengthened relationships with key multilateral and regional organizations, as well as through strategic bilateral relations. In doing so, the Department builds capacity both within government and among domestic civil society organizations to advance gender equality and represent Canada in key international or bilateral meetings with our counterparts in other countries.

  3. Support Canada’s Foreign Policy Objectives:

    Collaborate with other federal departments, provincial and territorial governments, and with Canadian civil society to support Global Affairs Canada (GAC) in promoting Canadian values and advancing federal priorities abroad (e.g. negotiating resolutions and agreements to advance gender equality to support broader government priorities, such as Indigenous issues, human rights issues, women peace and security, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and climate change; and providing gender equality expertise regarding the negotiation and implementation of gender provisions in trade agreements).

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