BARRY’S BAY – Balance for Better is 2019’s theme for International Women’s Day.March 8 is set aside annually to commemorate women’s many remarkable contributions to society. But why do we celebrate Women’s Day at all?For centuries, women have been instrumental in initiating change. Since approximately 50% of the population is female, a day of recognition seems fitting.
In 1909, the first National Women’s Day was celebrated in the United States. The day of recognition followed on the heels of the garment workers’ strike in New York in 1908, when women protested their deplorable working conditions, and were heard.
Another major milestone was achieving a woman’s right to vote.
In Canada, the right to vote movement was spearheaded by suffragette Nellie McClung.
“Give us our due!” Nellie McClung famously said. It became the battle cry for Canadian women right across the country.
Thanks to McClung’s efforts, the movement took a major leap forward, when the Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba passed a law on January 28, 1916 giving women the right to vote provincially, as well as put themselves forward as candidates in provincial elections.
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