Hi, Martha here.
I just learned that Helena Guergis has cancelled her appearance on Power Play. This, notwithstanding her title and responsibilities as Minister of State for the Status of Women.
I won't be on the show now after all--appropriately, CTV tries hard to keep a balanced representation of parties. But here we are, on the 40th anniversary of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women, and the Minister of State should be prepared to answer the questions I would have put to her on the show: (i) why did the Harper government cut funding to Status of Women by almost half (12 of 16 regional offices had to close); (ii) why did the Harper government insist on the removal of all references to "equality" in the Status of Women material (after all, the whole point was, and is, EQUALITY); (iii) why has the Harper government turned back efforts to ensure pay equity (women in Canada still make only about 70% of what men in Canada do for the same work); and (iv) why, as we are about to learn (the PM will hear this in Davos), that the Global Gender Gap report will show that of the 115 countries covered since 2006, more than 2/3 have improved (which means that the world, generally, has reduced the gap between women and men), but that Canada has DROPPED 9 spots since 2006 to 25th spot?
I would really like to have asked Ms. Guergis, on television: "Why are Canadian women worse off relative to men since Harper took power in 2006? Why do we have an even bigger gender gap, in terms of such factors (used in the GGG Report) as economic opportunity, educational attainment, literacy, health and political empowerment?"