Women Transforming Cities has a 'Watch Council' team that reviews the City of Vancouver Council agendas. If we find a staff report, motion or hear of a public hearing about something that might have a strong impact on self identified women and girls we decide how to raise our concerns with Council.
We may write them a letter, phone councillors, send them an email or ask to speak to the issue at council and let other organizations active on the issue know what is happening.
Last week (October 2020) we sent the Mayor and all Councillors a letter.
The pressing issue was a staff report on the proposed three year "Vancouver Plan Phase 1 Report: Public Engagement Summary, Provisional Goals”.
We stated that "given the impacts of COVID 19, the economic crisis, job and business losses, a huge rise in violence against women and IBPOC and the climate crisis, we ask you to consider whether the Vancouver Plan is what the city needs or even wants at this time or can afford?"
The Plan lacked a gendered intersectional lens and we recommended it be sent to the new Diversity and Inclusion Manager to create a gendered intersectional framework for the plan recommending that the global diversity & inclusion benchmarks standards for organizations around the world could be used as a model. We stated that equity and inclusion should not be in a silo but as an overview of the plan and each of the goals.
What happened to the need to address creating green jobs for women many who are still unemployed because of COVID-19?
What happened to your commitment to a city wide anti violence against women strategy given the huge increase of violence and racism against women, trans and IBPOC?
What happened to the commitment to implement the Murdered and Missing Women’s Inquiry Recommendations?
Will you have the staffing or budget to address these pressing issues if you approve this plan?
We were really excited to hear that the Council unanimously moved a motion to receive not accept the Vancouver Plan and to send it to the Diversity and Inclusion Manager.