“Today, we pay tribute to the extraordinary women who have pioneered the fight for equality in Alberta and around the world.

“Today, we also take time to mark Alberta’s first-ever Status of Women ministry, which two years ago on this day, received its mandate to build a feminist voice in government.

“Since then, we raised the minimum wage because two-thirds of those earning minimum wage are women.

“We created new, affordable child care spaces, because access to quality child care is the single most effective way to close the gender pay gap.

“We made a historic investment to support survivors of sexual violence – the vast majority of whom are women and girls – because no one should have to suffer in silence.

“This is all possible because women are leading in our government and now make up more than half of Alberta’s boards and agencies, because diverse perspectives at the table lead to better decisions for everyone.

“Today, we celebrate all the progress we have made, but it’s also a day for action, because women continue to face systemic barriers and inequality. This International Women’s Day takes place against the backdrop of a global movement, where millions of women have said time’s up on the sexual harassment and assault they face every day, time’s up on the violence that’s rooted in women’s inequality.

“So, today, we salute all women and allies who are pressing for progress, and recommit ourselves to the cause of equality so we can make life better for all women in Alberta.”

Editor’s note: The Alberta legislature and McDougall Centre will be lit in purple to commemorate International Women’s Day. 

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