The summer issue of Voice is always our Women’s Issue. It is an opportunity to recognize the achievements of women members, to talk about the value and impact of mentorship and women’s programs and to acknowledge both how far we have come as an organization and an advocate for social change, and how far we have yet to go.
Letter from the Editor
The summer issue of Voice is our women’s issue. It’s an opportunity to celebrate ETFO’s women members, highlight their accomplishments and centre their voices. In this issue we consider the importance of both storytelling – creating powerful and inclusive narratives about our social movements – and organizing to respond to the regressive policies of the current Conservative government. As President Hammond writes in his column, “We are seeing the powerful impact of our women leaders and others who are fighting to ensure that every Ontario student gets the education they deserve, and every Ontario educator has safe, secure and well-funded working conditions.”
Two articles in this issue profile the work of women organizers. Ashleigh Doherty writes about organizing with students and community members for housing equity in High-Rise Heroes: Lessons from Neighbourhood Struggles and Vickita Bhatt writes about responding to the Ford Conservative government by organizing with her colleagues, local parents and other community members in Building Solidarity Through Community. Both consider the importance of building strong networks and the powerful impact of working together to make change.
In Can You Hear Her Voice?, Rachelle Bergen asks us to consider how much we know about women in Canadian history when the traditional focus has been the accomplishments of white men. “There is work to be done,” she writes, “to ensure that students learn a history that foregrounds the stories, accomplishments and contributions of women, taking into account that stories of women who have intersecting identities (who are racialized, Indigenous, living with a disability, LGBTQ) are further marginalized from history books.”
In a related story, Inspiring Equity, Resilience and the Pursuit of Greatness, Allison Ebanks considers strategies for empowering young women students in our classrooms and challenging the stereotypes that hinder them.
All of these articles, plus book reviews, a special poster insert with a quote from Audre Lorde and an activity for your classroom and the summer crossword are sure to make great summer reading.
- Izida Zorde
When faced with a regressive government that consistently demonstrates its backwards logic, we must double down on our commitments to one another, to our collective well-being and to equity and social justice.