Langley, B.C. – Today, Langley Member of Parliament Mark Warawa made the following statement on the occasion of the second-annual International Day of the Girl on October 11, 2013:
“Today, on October 11, I encourage all Canadians to mark the International Day of the Girl by celebrating girls in their communities, across the country, and around the world.
“Unfortunately, we live in a world where millions of girls and young women face many devastating acts of discrimination. Each day girls and young women face violence, sexual exploitation, forced labour, homelessness, ill health and even death. In fact, the United Nations reports that over 200 million women and girls are missing world-wide due to systematic discrimination, known as gendercide.
“The International Day of the Girl provides an opportunity for girls to have a greater understanding of their rights and how to exercise them, and to encourage them as future leaders in Canada and throughout the world.
“I invite all Canadians to be a force for change in our world through spreading awareness, valuing girls in their communities, and opposing discrimination in every form. Support for girls and their basic human rights is vital for the health of our country, and our world.
“I am proud to be part of a government that believes that when girls and boys, women and men are treated with equal dignity and respect, everyone will benefit.”
Canada has taken a lead role within the international community in recognizing discrimination against girls. On March 24, 2011, the House of Commons gave its unanimous support to Canada leading a campaign at the United Nations for designating an International Day of the Girl. Minister Rona Ambrose, the former Minister Status of Women, presented at the UN in New York in the fall of 2011 and led the international community to campaign for this initiative. The resolution designating the International Day of the Girl was formally adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 19, 2011.