Justin Trudeau marked International Women's Day by affirming his support of feminism as well as featuring the voices of his Cabinet staff. A call for a female figure to be selected for Canada's currency was also made. - Photo Justin Trudeau Twitter account

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke on International Women’s Day in a Globe and Mail op-ed today. He wrote of the opportunity gender equality represents and that “feminism” is not a word to fear.

“I was fortunate to be raised by a mother who believed in feminism, and who chose to raise her sons to embrace feminist values. I was fortunate to have a father who raised us to respect and defend everyone’s rights. Because of my parents, I am deeply grounded in my own identity as a proud feminist. My wife, Sophie, and I are raising our children with the same values.”

“We should not be afraid of the word feminism. Feminism is about equal rights and opportunities for men and women, about everyone having the same choices without facing discrimination based on gender. Equality is not a threat, it is an opportunity.”

Read the full op-ed here.

A stamp and coin collection was also released marking 100 years of women’s suffrage in Canada:

Also announced was the search for a new face for Canadian currency. The Bank of Canada is asking the public to nominate women deserving of the recognition. Submissions can be made on the bank’s website between now and April 15.

Trudeau also affirmed his support of the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s goals of improving heart health for Canadian Women:

Trudeau took time out to visit 95-year-old former long-running mayor and politician Hazel McCallion:

Trudeau posted several videos on his Twitter account from female members of his Cabinet, speaking on issues still faced by Canadian women.

Such as one from Hon MaryAnn Mihychuk  Minister of Employment, Workforce Development, & Labour explaining that although women are usually in the top 10-15% of their graduating class, they are still almost always in the last 10% to be hired.

From the Prime Minister’s office, the following theme was stated: “Canada’s theme for this year‘s International Women’s Day – Women’s Empowerment Leads to Equality – reminds us that we all benefit when women and girls have the opportunities and the resources they need to succeed.”

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