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ICAD Welcomes Canada’s First Feminist International Assistance Policy and its Potential Impact on the Government’s Global HIV Commitments to Reach the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals

9 June 2017 (Ottawa)ICAD applauds the much anticipated unveiling of Canada’s first feminist International Assistance Policy by Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau, targeting gender equality and women’s rights, including sexual and reproductive health rights, and initiatives that will make significant contribution to improving the health and lives of the most vulnerable. ICAD also congratulates Minister Bibeau on her strong leadership to ensure an inclusive International Assistance Review process from which this new feminist development policy has been carefully crafted. The review was conducted in partnership and collaboration with Canadian and international partners, a signal of solidarity and global leadership between the government, the Canadian international development sector, and partners around the world.

“Feminism and the promotion of women’s rights as human rights at the core of Canada’s International Assistance Policy means more meaningful engagement of key and vulnerable populations in our sustainable development programming, including women and girls, but also boys and men, and many other individuals and groups who bear the impact of harmful structural and social norms that significantly increase their risk of HIV infection,” says Robin Montgomery, Executive Director of the Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development (ICAD).

Canada’s feminist approach to sustainable development is a bold step towards supporting transformational change in the lives of the world’s most vulnerable and to achieving the 17 goals outlined in the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which include ending AIDS as a global public health threat. “Every day more than 1,000 women and adolescent girls are infected with HIV. HIV is both a cause and a consequence of poverty and is inextricably linked with other areas of development, including climate change, education, and health and social systems. The intersectional approach at the core of the SDGs is essential to an effective response to HIV”, says Tricia Smith, ICAD Board President.

By embracing a feminist approach to its foreign policy and assistance, Canada has carved out its role as a global leader on women’s rights and gender equality during a time in which the world needs it the most”, says Montgomery. ICAD looks forward to further examining the International Assistance Policy in collaboration with our civil society and government partners to leverage the possibilities of this framework and to ensure that Canada lives up to its new role as a global feminist leader and that the populations most vulnerable to HIV are not left behind.




Robin  Montgomery
Executive Director, Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development
613-233-7440 ext. 113

READ: Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy