April 14, 2022

The road to gender equity: A C2 conversation about what we need to get there

At C2, we believe that in order to generate progress and innovation, it’s essential to be open to the thinking and experience of others and to cultivate empathy. While many conversations are currently taking place on issues of social and environmental justice, it’s important to us that these conversations also resonate in our offices amongst the team. That’s why a few weeks ago we invited Rachel Kiddell-Monroe, a Montreal-based activist, lawyer and speaker, to lead a rich discussion on gender equality with the C2 team.

In 1989, Rachel left her law practice to work on Indigenous rights and independence in East Timor with organizations based in Indonesia, which was a defining and formative experience for her. From there, she joined Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) and led emergency humanitarian missions in Central and East Africa, and Latin America.

In 2018, she founded SeeChange Initiative, a Canadian charity that supports Indigenous and other vulnerable communities around the world. She is also a Professor of Practice at McGill University where she teaches annual courses on Decolonizing Humanitarian Action.

Here are some highlights from the conversation: 
 

Understanding intersectionality

When it comes to social justice issues, there are some concepts that you need to be familiar with. Intersectionality, which refers to the situation of people who experience multiple forms of stratification, domination or discrimination in a society, is an essential concept that allows us to better understand the various barriers to equality.

 

Gender equity is not an option, but an obligation

Gender being a social construct, it’s now time to dismantle the expectations and preconceived notions attributed to the feminine and masculine genders. For a long time, certain qualities have been associated with the female gender, such as collaboration, empathy, care, etc. The rigidity with which certain gender roles are imposed is to the detriment of all. Deconstructing these preconceived notions opens a door to a world of possibilities for everyone.

Of course, the topic is vast and highly nuanced, but Rachel’s presentation provoked rich discussion among the team. By cultivating this curiosity, listening to diverse voices and fostering exchange and collaboration, we can find solutions that will generate progress and innovation, both on a small scale (as in within the C2 team) and on a large scale through our collective actions.

 

See change in action
Discover the SeeChange Initiative, the Canadian charity Rachel founded supporting Indigenous and other vulnerable communities around the world.

Find Out More

 

Questions or comments? Drop us a line at editorial@c2.biz