Who we are
The Department for Women and Gender Equality works to advance gender equality through an intersectional gendered lens. Working in partnership with key stakeholders, including civil society organizations, labour groups, the private sector, other orders of government, and First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples, the Department actively promotes the inclusion of all people in Canada’s economic, social, and political life. The Department for Women and Gender Equality works to uphold its mandate to advance gender equality by performing a central coordination function within the Government of Canada by developing and implementing policies, providing grants and contributions, delivering programs, investing in research, and providing advice to achieve equality for people of all genders, including women.
Since 1971, there has been a Minister responsible for the Status of Women. The Office of the Coordinator, Status of Women, was initially established in the Privy Council Office in response to a recommendation contained in the report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in 1970.
The Office of the Coordinator, Status of Women, became a departmental agency of the federal government on April 1, 1976.
In December 2018, new legislation created the Department for Women and Gender Equality, transforming the former Status of Women Canada into an official department of the Government of Canada. This change modernizes and formalizes, in law, the roles of the Minister and the Department.
The mandate of the Department is 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. This application of a gender and diversity lens will help us to understand better the intersection of sex and gender with other identity factors. These factors include – but are not limited to – race, national and ethnic origin, Indigenous origin or identity, age, sexual orientation, socio-economic condition, place of residence and disability.
A Canada where people of all genders, including women, are equal in every way and can achieve their full potential.
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