November 23, 2021 – Today, just over two months since Canada’s 44th General Election, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary May Simon, Governor General of Canada, delivered the Speech from the Throne on behalf of the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the re-elected federal government. 

The Speech from the Throne opens Parliament and signals the Government’s priorities and intentions for the upcoming legislative session as well as for the next budget cycle.

Here are some highlights related to gender equality and global health: 

Gender Equality and Social Justice 

Child Care

  • The Government will also continue building the first-ever Canada-wide early learning and child care system. By the end of 2022, average fees for regulated child care will be cut in half in most of the provinces and territories. And in some places, this will even happen as early as the start of the year
  • The Government will continue working with the remaining two provinces to finalize agreements that will deliver $10-a-day child care for families.

Gender-Based Violence 

  • The Government is committed to moving forward with a 10-year National Action Plan on gender-based violence, and will continue to support organizations providing critical services. 

Diversity and Inclusion 

  • The Government will continue combatting hate and racism, including with a renewed Anti-Racism Strategy. 
  • The Government will continue to invest in the empowerment of Black and racialized Canadians, and Indigenous Peoples. It will also continue to fight harmful content online, and stand up for LGBTQ2 communities while completing the ban on conversion therapy.

Reconciliation

  • As the Government continues to respond to the Calls to Action, it will invest in that truth, including with the creation of a national monument to honour survivors, and with the appointment of a Special Interlocutor to further advance justice on residential schools. 
  • To support communities, the Government will also invest significantly in a distinctions-based mental health and wellness strategy, guided by Indigenous Peoples, survivors, and their families. 
  • The Government will accelerate work with Indigenous partners to address the national tragedy of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People. 

Global Health and International Development 

“The last 19 months have underscored that we live in a deeply interconnected world. Canada must stand up on the pressing challenges of our time, through our own commitments and by increasing our engagement with international partners, coalitions, and organizations.“

  • Increasing Canada’s foreign assistance budget each year, and investing in sustainable, equitable, and feminist development that benefits the world’s most vulnerable and promotes gender equality will continue to be priorities.
  • Around the world, Canada will continue working with its partners to ensure fair and equitable access to vaccines and other resources.

The Equal Futures Network is encouraged by the broad signals from the Speech, but will continue working closely to ensure that these commitments are backed by on-going and sustainable funding. Further details on the Government’s agenda will be unveiled in the coming weeks with the release of Ministerial Mandate Letters, which will detail specific programs and issues that Ministers will be tasked with during this session.

Stay tuned to Equal Futures Network social media channels for more updates! 

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The Equal Futures Network acknowledges that Indigenous people are the traditional guardians of Turtle Island, on the land also known Canada.

Read our full Territory Acknowledgment here.