Vaughan is first Canadian municipality to sign Leadership Accord on Gender Diversity
VAUGHAN, ON, March 8, 2019 /CNW/ - The following remarks were delivered by Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua during the City of Vaughan's 2019 International Women's Day event. To mark the occasion, Mayor Bevilacqua formally signed the Leadership Accord on Gender Diversity developed by Electricity Human Resources Canada.
"Good morning and thank you for joining us at the City of Vaughan's sixth annual International Women's Day celebration. I feel truly blessed to be in a room full of inspiring women, each of whom I am certain has her own story of perseverance.
"Today, we join with people around the world to celebrate the achievements of women everywhere – our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, daughters, friends and mentors who bring so much love, light and knowledge into the world.
"Vaughan is proud of the transformational and enduring contributions women have made and continue to make in our community. From professions in STEM and education, to raising families and building cities, their potential truly is limitless. Women today work in various professions and continue to achieve - and exceed - accomplishments that were once out of reach.
"There are remarkable women shaping our City's future – Vaughan's first female Fire Chief, Deryn Rizzi, and our first Integrity Commissioner and Lobbyist Registrar, Suzanne Craig. Margie Singleton is the CEO of Vaughan Public Libraries and the first to oversee the largest capital expansion in that organization's history. Vaughan Council is comprised of four outstanding women who answered the call of public service to represent the best interests of citizens. We were honoured to welcome a native of the City of Vaughan who has served internationally in the Canadian Army. Commander Kelly Williamson delivered an inspiring keynote address that shared her personal story of success in a largely male-dominated field.
"Today is a day to learn and reflect upon the sacrifices of those who have fought tirelessly for human rights. From Viola Desmond to Emily Carr, these fearless individuals paved the way towards justice and equality. Their accomplishments are enshrined in the pages of Canadian history.
"I encourage you to visit one of 10 Vaughan Public Library locations and to learn more about the role models who have and continue to shape Canada's history.
"It is vital that we as a community recognize that empowering women and respecting their rights is fundamental to building a place where everyone is treated equally and can live peacefully. I hope that you take the opportunity to reflect on the women from past and present who have broken barriers and advocated for change. We must continue to fight for the freedoms of women of all backgrounds and create opportunities for them to succeed.
"This past Tuesday, Vaughan council came together to demonstrate their support for the Leadership Accord on Gender Diversity. Developed by Electricity Human Resources Canada, this Accord is a call to action that challenges organizations to do more to bring about equal opportunities for women in the workplace.
"Today, I am proud to sign this document on behalf of the City of Vaughan, making ours the first municipality in Canada to sign the Accord.
"This opportunity was first brought to my attention through my role as a board member at Alectra Utilities. Alectra is the largest municipally-owned electricity utility in Canada and was the first company in Canada to sign the Accord. I want to recognize Kathy Lerette, Senior Vice President Business Transformation, from Alectra, for being with us today.
"This public commitment will continue to promote our values of diversity, equality and inclusion. This is an opportunity for us to build on our success and I want to recognize my Council colleagues for unanimously endorsing this meaningful initiative.
"I take immense pride in formally signing the Accord on International Women's Day which will reaffirm the City's dedication to equality for all people in our great city. Thank you."
- International Women's Day is celebrated on March 8 every year.
- The 2019 UN theme for IWD is "Think equal, build smart, innovate for change."
- The City of Vaughan is the first municipality in Canada to endorse the Leadership Accord on Gender Diversity. Developed by Electricity Human Resources Canada, the Accord is a public commitment by organizations to promote the values of diversity, equality and inclusion.
- City of Vaughan Culture webpage
- UN International Women's Day website
- Mayor Bevilacqua's Member's Resolution (PDF)
- Leadership Accord on Gender Diversity (PDF)
- Accord backgrounder (PDF)
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ABOUT VAUGHAN: The City of Vaughan is one of Canada's fastest growing cities with a population of more than 335,000. Incorporated in 1991, Vaughan includes the communities of Concord, Kleinburg, Maple, Thornhill and Woodbridge. This culturally diverse municipality is located in the heart of York Region and the Greater Toronto Area.
SOURCE City of Vaughan
For further information: MEDIA CONTACT: Michael Genova, Corporate and Strategic Communications, T. 905-832-2281, ext. 8027, E. [email protected], vaughan.ca