Women called “whores” and “bitches” in politics

Jane Taber of the Globe and Mail recently interviewed Belinda Stronach about what needs to change to get more women into politics. Belinda, now the executive vice-chair of Magna International Inc. had just accepted an award from Equal Voice for her contributions as a parliamentarian.  Ms Stronach mentioned three things: video conferencing of meetings, phone voting and more respectful behaviour in the House of Commons. She noted that in the House of Commons women have been referred to as “bitches” and “whores” and that would never happen in corporate boardrooms.

The things that strikes me is that all three suggestions benefit men as much as women. Still I am all ears because I know how badly we need women in politics. And, having just attended the Canadian Women Voters Congress campaign school for women, I am sad to report that very few of the women in attendance had the money, the courage or the thick skin to be able to tolerate the difficulties faced by so many women (and men) in politics. We should be ashamed!

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