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This Sunday, March 8, will be International Women’s Day 2015. As a non-affiliated celebration, IWD looks to promote knowledge and awareness of the past and on-going struggle for women’s equality. Without dwelling on negativity, it also seeks to salute the hard-working feminists of the world for their diverse and dynamic labours. This year in Vancouver, there are a couple neat events taking place around town. What better way to celebrate than in the company of other positive souls! Check out some (or all!) of these cool happenings:
International Women’s Day Conference – hosted by YWiB SFU
Saturday March 7, 9am-5pm; Pinnacle Vancouver Harbourfront Hotel 1133 West Hastings Street, Vancouver.
With the theme of, “Make It Happen”, YWiB SFU is spending the day hosting workshops and panels. Inspiring young women to become leaders and take initiative is this group’s main goal. You also get to enjoy time to network and get to know fellow delegates during the event. Tickets are $40 and available via Eventbrite.
Edit-a-thon – hosted by Art + Feminism
Multiple dates and times.
Join a campaign to improve women’s presence online. Art+Feminism’s ‘Edit-a-thon’ takes on the slanted world of Wikipedia articles by mass editing in groups. Happening all over North America, there are multiple options in Vancouver to meet up and participate. Each event has computers to use and possible accommodation for childcare. Tutoring is provided for first-time editors. These meetups are free, but you should RSVP here.
Women & the Cuban Revolution – hosted by Vancouver Communities in Solidarity with Cuba,
Saturday March 7, 6pm; Vancouver Public Library, Peter Kay Room, 350 W. Georgia St., Vancouver.
This event examines the “revolution within the revolution” which took place in Cuba. Spend the evening discovering how this state has achieved 43% representation of women in government, and 60% representation in the labour force. Presented through film, music and poetry, this event fuses politics and art. All the details can be found on Facebook.
I got so sick of street harassment in Vancouver that I bought bear mace at 3Vets (near Broadway and Cambie). Not sure if it’s my increased confidence carrying a perfectly legal product or what, but the harassment is way less. I’ve only had to pull it out of my bag once, and the guy ran, I mean, literally ran. Now he knows the fear I once had to feel daily!
So I’m taking the metro and this guy comes up to me and whispers in my ear. He’s close and starts making lewd comments that make my skin crawl. He said very disgusting things. The more look frustrated the more he smirks like he’s getting off on it. I get out of the metro early and wait for the next train. I reported this to the transit police. I am always a bit tense and guarded when taking the sky train now.
There is a guy harrasing people along false creek condo along main street
I was walking along Dunsmuir on Friday night talking on the phone with my boyfriend and headed off to the BC Lions game, when I suddenly felt and heard a slap on my butt. I spun around to see a guy running in the opposite direction and around the corner along the Seymour. All I could do was yell “EXCUSE ME!!!” after him. I didn’t see his face or the others he was with.
This is the first time I have experienced a physical form of street harassment, and now the few times I have walked alone at night since the incident I have been really anxious and super aware of my surroundings. During daylight and/or with others I have also been anxious but nowhere near the same degree as at night. I want to be able to be me and be in public without being anxious that someone will invade my personal bubble and touch me inappropriately.
While sitting in the airport passenger lounge, waiting for a flight, I was approached by a man in his 60’s. He looked very distinguished and was wearing some kind of military officer’s uniform. He leaned in very closely and told me to smile. I told him I was busy. He said it again, and added that pretty girls should always be smiling. I said I was busy thinking about work and didn’t want to smile for him. He repeated himself like he didn’t hear me. I told him to leave me alone and he finally went away.
Unfortunately it turns out he was on my flight. Just before takeoff he actually came to my seat, leaned in close again, and said it was a shame for a pretty girl to be rude. I told him loudly to go sit down but he talked over my words. Finally some people sitting behind me spoke up and also told him to go sit down. He finally did, still repeating what a shame it was.
I felt sick, being treated like a doll that existed solely for a stranger’s enjoyment.
I was walking alone on Burnaby Street when four young (20ish) men approached me. As they walked by, one of them lunged at me and screamed loudly. I flinched and the four guys laughed and kept walking.
For a couple of seconds, I really thought they were going to beat me up. If their aim was to scare me and shake my confidence, it worked.
I was riding the Kitsilano bus alone one day, wearing a knee-length skirt with a cherry pattern on it. The bus was pretty crowded, so I was standing near the back. I noticed a guy in his 20’s leering at my legs and licking his lips. I stared back at him, hoping that if I caught his eye he might be embarassed.
Instead he noticed me and grinned, and told me that the cherries on my skirt looked juicy.
I told him his comment was inappropriate and gross. Suddenly he got angry and started shouting at all the passengers around us that I was a cold, nasty, mean bitch. No one intervened.
I told him that if not tolerating bad behaviour makes me a bitch, then I was happy to be a bitch. He kept shouting insults at me and about me, all the way from Kits Beach to Broadway.