Please read the statement from Elizabeth May, Member of Parliament for Saanich–Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, on the International Day of the Girl 2023:
“As we are recognising Women’s History Month, I want to take today to celebrate the International Day of the Girl.
Although Goal 5 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aims to achieve gender equality, it is clear that we are far from meeting our 2030 targets. Many girls become victims of sexism, sexual violence and exploitation, female genital mutilation and child marriage. Over 32 million primary-aged girls are currently not attending schooling. Climate change and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which continue today, only exasperate the conditions that promote gender inequality.
The human rights of girls and women must be centered in all government planning. The international community can realise these rights under the Convention of the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). To do this, countries must invest in all girls, whether infant or adolescent, and provide them with the best opportunities to thrive as leaders in their communities.”