OCASI Statement for International Women's Day 2023



March 8, 2023 / Toronto

On March 8, 2023 we are in solidarity with our sisters in Ontario, Canada, and around the world as we fight collectively for gender justice, racial justice and migrant justice.

It is now more than three years since the onset of the unprecedented global health, social and economic crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic. Deeply-rooted inequalities in our society have taken a heavier toll on Indigenous, Black and racialized women; on refugees and migrants and women without immigration status. But it has cost us all.

The status quo has never served us well – and this was never more clear than during the pandemic. But despite civil society calls for systemic change, and despite assurances from all orders of government, it looks very much as if we are headed back to business as usual.

International women’s day was born of the efforts of women workers who organized collectively for economic and social justice. That struggle has never ended.

We confront a world where women, girls, trans and non-binary people are at the highest risk for gender-based violence. Where Indigenous, Black and racialized women are over-policed and over-represented in the criminal justice system, and have the worst outcomes in life chances. Where women are disproportionately targeted in anti-Muslim hate and anti-trans hate because they are often more visible. Where borders cross refugee women denying them the right to seek asylum. Where borders cross migrant women denying them security and safety. Where women at the intersections of identity - race, (dis)ability, gender identity and expression, and more – experience the highest levels of violence, poor health, and poverty, and the biggest gender wage gap.

This must change, now more than ever. Let us work together collectively, for gender justice, racial justice and migrant justice.

We call on our governments to deliver on their promises for gender equity that will serve all women equitably.

We call on our governments to deliver safe housing, and fully accessible and appropriate healthcare and services for all women regardless of immigration status. We call on the government of Canada to deliver a fully inclusive immigration status regularization program that will leave no woman behind.

Happy International Women’s Day.


Statement from the Canadian Centre for Sexual and Gender Diversity
“There’s no Gender Equality Without Trans Women”: National Coalition of Community Organizations

Déclaration du le centre Canadien de la diversité des genres + de la sexualité
« Il n’y a pas d’égalité de genre sans les femmes trans » : Coalition national des organismes communautaires