MAKING Vancouver a women-friendly city!

Keeping our Elected Accountable and on Track

To ensure that civic initiatives are truly inclusive, we have been reviewing every Council agenda to make sure it has a gendered intersectional lens on key issues. If they don’t we will be at Council speaking out. We urge you to review the biweekly agendas and sign up to speak to motions that don’t have that lens or speak to the issues that are important to you.


Come join us!


There is a lot of momentum and we need more voices to sustain the advocacy! 

VANCOUVER, May 29, 2019.

City Council responded strongly to make Vancouver a global leader in advancing gender equity at today's council meeting. To see the staff presentation, click here.


Based on the support from the Mayor and Council on commitments made during the Women Transforming Cities' Hot Pink Paper Campaign 2018 and after several hours of discussions, including questions directed to former Councillor Ellen Woodsworth, Co-Chair of Women Transforming Cities, the following motions were approved:

A. THAT Council receive the Administrative Report dated April 9, 2019, entitled “Interim Report – Women’s Equity and Trans, Gender Variant and Two-Spirit Inclusion”, for information.
B. THAT Council direct staff to send the Administrative Report dated April 9, 2019, entitled “Interim Report – Women’s Equity and Trans, Gender Variant and Two-Spirit Inclusion”, to the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, Vancouver Public Library Board, Vancouver Board of Education and Vancouver Police Department Board for information.

D. THAT further to the motion dated November 28, 2017, entitled “Equitable Parental Leave at the City of Vancouver”, Council direct staff to arrange a briefing on this matter to explore options for achieving this goal.


Furthermore, the following amendment to the main motion was moved by Councillor Jean Swanson to direct staff to "Develop a comprehensive gendered intersectional strategy with short and long-term goals that are measurable for each department and every strategy and supported for at least 6 years". The amended motion passed unanimously.


City of Vancouver to "Develop a comprehensive gendered intersectional strategy with short and long-term goals that are measurable for each department and every strategy and supported for at least 6 years". 

HPP Campaign Vancouver City Council Updates...

Supporting Gender Equity and Diversity in Vancouver City Council

VANCOUVER, March 10, 2020

Mayor Stewart’s Member Motion, which was tabled and passed unanimously (with amendment) by Vancouver City Council.

The motion directs the City to establish a Gender, Diversity and Intersectionality Audit of Council and its operations, to monitor and track ways to support a more diverse City Council.

I hope the motion’s whereas clauses and text of the resolution give the rationale and direction established.


Moved by Mayor Stewart. Seconded by Councillor Carr


1.           Legislative bodies, including Vancouver City Council, are workplaces that reflect the power structures and gender

              dynamics of the past through their operational practices and legislative frameworks;

2.           Legislative workplaces should be family-friendly environments for all workers - including elected and non-elected staff -

              so that their needs to live as well as work are taken into account;

3.           Legislative workplaces that embody and promote gender equity and diversity deliver better to constituents and are more


4.           Many legislative workplaces that are working to move away from male‑dominated membership towards promoting equity

              acknowledge barriers that deter diversity and hinder progress towards equality, and then take strong action to address

               these issues;

5.           The United Nations Inter-Parliamentary Union recommends undertaking an audit of legislative bodies to identify

              shortcomings in the processes and structures of democratic governments, and have developed tools to use in this audit,

              most notably the 2012 “Plan of Action for Gender-Sensitive Parliaments”;

6.           For the first time in Vancouver’s history, over 70% of Council members are women, and a large proportion of the non-

              elected staff working for council are also women;

7.           Women in elected and other public positions report higher levels of harassment and sexual harassment;

8.           Workplace conditions, such as hours of work and access to childcare, can promote or hinder participation in elected

              democracies; and

9.           A gender and diversity audit of Vancouver City Council and its representation, infrastructure, and political and legislative

               frameworks has never been undertaken;


THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT Council direct staff in the City Clerk’s Office to establish an annual Gender, Diversity, and Intersectional Audit to examine how Vancouver City Council operates, and make recommendations for policy, bylaw, and convention changes to promote gender, diversity, and intersectional equity in Vancouver City Council including examining:

  • Descriptive statistics, including the volunteer reporting of gender identity, diversity, and intersectional representation amongst election candidates, elected members of council, non-elected support staff, and advisory bodies;

  • Infrastructure currently in place to support council members and staff with their work including building layouts and furnishings, access to childcare, safe spaces, inclusive artwork, chamber floor permissions, night sittings, parental leave, proxy voting, video conferencing, electronic voting, and washroom inclusivity and accessibility;

  • Policies and legislation in place to change the workplace culture including those pertaining to codes of conduct, harassment, sexual harassment, heckling, gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) and equity;

FURTHER THAT the Audit be designed and led by City Clerk’s Office with the input and involvement of Advisory Committees;

AND FURTHER that this first audit and recommendations be presented to Council in Q1 2021 during International Women’s Day Week and in each subsequent year at this time.

We have followed up on our promise to hold the Mayor and Council accountable to their commitments to the Hot Pink Paper Municipal Campaign 2018. We have also met privately with each of the Councillors and the Mayors office to urge them to act now to create a women-friendly city and offered to help them create gender intersectional motions and actions in all departments. We were happy to hear that staff has begun work on an intersectional lens on city work.


Click on the following link to download the 2018 HPP Campaign Commitments from the new Mayor and Council



Mayor's Commitments

During his campaign for Mayor,   Kennedy Stewart committed to moving forward with all of the WTC's 2018 HPP Campaign recommendations, with one exception related to transportation.

Mayor & Party Commitments

Moving forward together!


Mayor Kennedy Stewart, the NPA, GREENS, ONE CITY, and COPE parties all committed to the following policy and actions proposed in WTC's 2018 HPP Campaign. 



GREEN Commitments

One City Commitments

COPE Commitments

Hot Pink paper REport Card Results!

Mayoral Candidates and political parties responded strongly in favour of the Hot Pink Paper Municipal Campaign Challenge to support a Women Friendly City by committing to act on 11 key issues.  Click here to download the HPP Report Card.PDF  Women Transforming Cities will be using the 2018 Hot Pink Paper Campaign to hold elected candidates and their parties accountable for making Vancouver a women-friendly! 


News articles on the HPP:  Georgia Straight and the Star

HPp Campaign 2018 LAUNCHED on SEpt 11

We are quickly approaching elections on October 20th! Over the past several months, Women Transforming Cities together with self-identified women, girls and community allies have developed the recommendations in the Hot Pink Paper (HPP)  Municipal Campaign 2018.  We want candidates to commit their platforms to be women-friendly!   Ask your party and candidates to support the HPP issues to make a women-friendly city!



See the HPP Launch Photo Gallery and media coverage on Rable and Spacing Vancouver



Working on the HPP CAMPAIGN 2018

We're urging municipal parties to prioritize gender equality ahead of the fall election!  


Municipal elections are around the corner and the Hot Pink Paper Campaign is gearing up for action!  Come support the Campaign! 


1. We want all candidates and parties to use a gender intersectional lens on City policies, programs, budget, funding, staffing and governance including to commit to fully funding and implementing the City of Vancouver's Women's Equity Strategy.  The Strategy was unanimously approved by Council and committed Vancouver to using an intersectional approach in policy design. 


2. Support a council that reflects at least 50% diverse women candidates.


3. We want political parties to put a gendered intersectional lens to their platforms that address equality for all of Vancouver's diverse women and community members impacted by discrimination.


We need volunteers! Come lend a hand and support the Hot Pink Paper Campaign! If you are interested to volunteer your time and skills, please email us at


Thank you to all who attended the Hot Pink Pathways to a Women-friendly Vancouver Event! We had nearly 100 people at the event!  We explored opportunities and barriers to women’s political participation in Vancouver and the hot button issues for this election season. The event consisted of two segments. First, our panel spoke to their civic engagement experiences, and the municipal issues they see as key to women’s success. From there, we broke out into a discussion of top election issues, and what municipal candidates can do to make Vancouver work for women and girls. We would also like to thank to our panel speakers for sharing ! Shauna Sylvester and Wai Young, Mayoral candidates; Carrie Bercic, School Board Trustee; Diana Day, School Board Trustee candidate; Adrianne Carr and Melissa DeGenova, City Councillors; and Niki Sharma, former Park Board Chairperson. 

The Hot Pink Pathways to a Women-friendly Vancouver Event Videos (Created by Mark Anderson):

We will be summarizing the event discussions and recommendations over the next month to inform the HPP Campaign 2018 for the upcoming October 20th municipal elections. The HPP Campaign advocates for all parties to make a commitment in policy and practice to a "Women Friendly City”.

Hot Pink paper Campaign 2014 follow up

In 2017, students from the University of Guelph, ON. helped conduct a follow-up study to look at outcomes of the 2014 HPP Campaign to date. The study assessed three key areas; adequate and affordable housing, violence against women and girls, and environment (making green work for everyone). Below are the findings.


Download the executive summary

Download the full report

Download the Adequate and Affordable Housing Fact sheet

Download the Violence Against Women and Girls Fact sheet

Download the Environment - Making Green Work for Everyone Fact sheet

Hot Pink paper cAMPAIGN 2014

In the Vancouver municipal elections in 2014 all municipal parties committed to “developing and implementing a comprehensive violence against women and girls ‘Civic Action Plan’ to be developed with womens organizations” at an All Candidates meeting hosted by the Canadian Council of Women.

Download the full backgrounder.

Download the Hot Pink Paper

See the  2014 Party Report Cards

Party Responses

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