I dream of a free future for women and girls, where playing space travel is just as normal as playing Barbies, where she has a wealth of female role models in positions of power and influence, and her opportunities won't be limited by the identity she was born with.
Even in Canada we still face limits, as demonstrated by the average annual income for full-time photographers working 52 weeks/yr, nationwide (Macleans, 2018):
That's a 38.6% gap for the same work, and doesn't even take into consideration other intersections of identity that can widen the gap (like race and/or disability).
For the second year in a row, I was invited by the SkirtsAfire Festival to photograph Edmonton's International Women's Day Celebration. Each time I have attended this event I leave with a fire burning in my belly. To share that space with so many women, and applaud the progress we've made, is inspiring. Still, I know how many people outside those walls are ignorant or apathetic to the inequalities faced by women both locally and globally.
Today I signed two petitions with Amnesty International. One in support of imprisoned female human rights activists in Saudi Arabia, and the other in condemnation of a barbaric practice in Canadian hospitals that has allowed Indigenous women to be sterilized against their will as recently as 2017.
It's nice for us to celebrate on International Women's Day, but it should also be a time to remember that we're stronger together, and renew our commitment to a better future for all women and girls, all over the world.
Wage Gaps in Canada: https://www.macleans.ca/society/20-jobs-that-have-the-biggest-gender-wage-gaps-in-canada/image/19/#gallery/gender-pay-gap-jobs-in-canada/slide-19
Forced Sterilization: https://www.amnesty.ca/our-work/issues/womens-human-rights/sterilization-indigenous-women-canada-without-consent
Saudi Arabian Women’s Human Rights Activists: https://www.amnesty.ca/category/country/saudi-arabia