& # 39; We will not be back & # 39:: Hundreds of brave women cold and snow lined up in Toronto


Hundreds of women rallied and marched in downtown Toronto on Saturday despite cold and snow to make the Ontario government know that they would not remain silent about the wounds that affected their rights.

The committee of the annual Women 's third March event in Toronto said the event was an opportunity to show the government Doug Ford that women would not return to a time when they enjoyed less rights than they do now.

At midday, women gathered at Nathan Phillips Square, where they listened to several speakers, then they marched north on University Avenue to Queen's Park.

On the grounds that the Legislature, the Ontario Labor Federation made "calls for action," urging women to continue fighting for their rights.

This event is a statement that confirms that we will continue to move forward even though there are efforts to pull us back, & # 39; said Bianca Spence's organizer. (Talia Ricci / CBC)

The speakers at Nathan Phillips Square were asked to shorten his speech because of the cold. And when they speak, they briefly discuss various problems, with each having their own focus.

Country. Kristyn Wong-Tam, representing Ward 13 – the Toronto Center, said women marched on Saturday to ensure their voices were heard on issues such as gender equality, poverty and violence against women.

"There is a lot of anger around austerity measures from Doug Ford, specifically how it can endanger the lives of women and their children and their families," he said.

"Given the numbers here, it's very encouraging."

Before the speech took place on Saturday, the drum group warmed the crowd.

"Cold but exciting," said the participant

Ann Decter, a Toronto resident who took part in the rally and parade and who served as director of the community initiative in Canadian Women 's Foundation, a public foundation for women and girls, said she was happy to see so many young women at the event .

"It's cold but it's encouraging," he said. "When we get to University Avenue, we realize, there are far more people here than we thought."

Bianca Spence, organizer of the Women March On: Toronto and one of the chairmen of this year's program, said the march was an effort to bring awareness to the changes needed to make cities safer and more inclusive.

"The theme of our parade is: We will not return," Spence said before the rally began on Saturday.

& # 39; We will continue to move forward & # 39;

"This really speaks to the many setbacks and reductions that have been made recently through the provincial government and how those changes have affected some women and some of the most vulnerable people in our society," he said.

"Some of these reductions really try to move us backwards. This is a statement that confirms that we will continue to move forward despite efforts to pull us back."

A woman poses with a girl in a 3-year-old Women's March in Toronto. (Talia Ricci / CBC)

Among other things, he said, women showed their opposition to:

  • Changes in the health and physical education curriculum made by the province to change sexual education in Ontario schools.
  • Reimbursement of ministry status for Ontario women, with women's issues randomized to other portfolios.
  • Deductions for planned improvements to Ontario's disability support program.
  • Cutting the minimum wage increase to $ 15 and paying for sick days.
  • Cancellation of basic income pilot program.
  • Closure of the Ontario Children's Advocate Office.

Women March On: Toronto, which has organized the three women's parades in Toronto since 2017, is not affiliated with Women & # 39; s March Canada, a national organization linked to a larger group called Women & # 39's March Global.

He said Women March On: Toronto was also not connected with organizations marching in Washington, D.C. on Saturday.

"We are entirely local and independent. We are people in your environment," Spence said.

"We as a group don't want to be part of a big trademarked organization. I don't think you can trademark a movement. It doesn't belong to anyone. It belongs to everyone."


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