Panellists look at a pile of recycling on the floor that Vicki Husband dumped during her Women’s Day speech at St. Margaret’s women and climate change event on March 8. (Sarah Schuchard/ News Staff)

Elizabeth May talks about women and climate activism at St. Margaret’s School

On International Women’s Day the school hosted five panelists to talk about women’s role in land preservation

Women and their role in the climate crisis was the key issue explored at the St. Margaret’s School International Women’s Day event on Sunday, March 8. Elizabeth May, former Green Party leader and current MP for Saanich–Gulf Islands, attended the event as the keynote speaker. In her speech, May addressed the hardship women face in the pursuit of climate activism and gave the audience five recommendations for getting more involved in climate activism.

The event hosted five speakers, including May, all of whom were women assuming important roles within the climate movement. Panellists included Larisa Hucheson, Capital Regional District; Megan Humchitt, elected Heiltsuk Tribal councillor; Vicki Husband, forest and marine conservation advocate and Ines Khouider, St. Margaret’s student and youth climate activist.

ALSO READ: Saanich Gulf-Islands’s Elizabeth May coy about leadership plans

May addressed the perception that she has quit government after stepping down as the Green Party Leader, and assured the crowd she will be running again as MP for Saanich–Golf Islands and hinted at future plans.

“I would like to run for speaker because women are good for cleaning things up and there’s a mess there,” May said.

Quickly moving onto the theme of the panel, May pulled out a book to show the audience, “Gender Gap” by Bella Abzug. May noted Abzug was one of the first women to be elected into U.S. Congress and, “she was one of my most favourite friends in the whole world.”

ALSO READ: Saanich councillor withdraws motion to stand with Wet’suwet’en, plans to resubmit it

May noted the gender gap is a political and economical gap that continues to be a hurdle for women in positions of power and women trying to effect change environmentally and in their communities.

“Misogyny is not just that women don’t get treated fairly, it is that people hate us,” May said.

The panellists all touched on women’s connection and role in climate change, and the work and hurdles that people doing the work go through to make a difference.

ALSO READ: Pipeline protesters served with injunction for blocking Vancouver ports

Humchitt, who grew up in Bella Bella from the traditional lands of the Heiltsuk people, touched on her experience of the Nathan E. Stewart diesel spill in 2016. The 2016 spill polluted the shores of Bella Bella with 110,000 litres of oil.

Humchitt said the effects on the area were not only physical but also an assault on her culture and the traditional clam industry. Since the spill, Humchitt and her community continue to work to fix the effects of the incident. Her community continues to try to hold government and the Texas-based company responsible for the spill.

Humchitt shared her feelings on the weight that is put on the people fighting for land preservation. “It is hard work and it is scary work especially in the social media age … We need to amplify the voices that are calling for change,” she said.

sarah.schuchard@saanichnews.com


Like us on Facebook, or send a tweet to @sarah_schuchard
and follow us on Instagram

Elizabeth May

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The south gymnasium of St. Margaret’s School was lined with informative posters students had made for the Women’s Day event on March 8. (Sarah Schuchard/ News Staff)

Meg Foote, director of admissions for St. Margaret’s School attends the school’s Women’s Day event on March 8. (Sarah Schuchard/News Staff)

Just Posted

Greater Victoria resident sick with COVID-19 calls it a ‘horrible disease’

Tim Boat says he has ‘extreme coughing fits every hour’ to clear his lungs

Victoria to reassess 2020 budget in light of COVID-19; more hotel rooms found for the homeless

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps provided an update on municipal measures on March 31

Tents, sleeping bags donated to Our Place from local Victoria store

Robinson’s Outdoor Store received funds from PwC Canada to make the donation

Victoria police seek public help finding high-risk missing woman last seen on ferry

Mariah Konchak has shoulder-length dark hair, scars above her right eye and may be missing a tooth

Victoria police arrest man in stolen Jubilee Hospital worker’s car

Suspect found in car with drugs, stolen property and weapons

B.C. records five new COVID-19 deaths, ‘zero chance’ life will return to normal in April

Province continue to have a recovery rate of about 50 per cent

6.5-magnitude earthquake in Idaho shakes B.C. Interior

An earthquake was reportedly felt just before 5 p.m. throughout the Okanagan

John Horgan extends B.C.’s state of emergency for COVID-19

Premier urges everyone to follow Dr. Bonnie Henry’s advice

B.C.’s first community COVID-19 death was dentist ‘dedicated’ to health: lawyer

Vincent was 64 when he died on March 22 after attending the Pacific Dental Conference

Two inmates at prison housing Robert Pickton test positive for COVID-19

Correctional Service of Canada did not release any details on the identities of the inmates

BC SPCA launches matching campaign to help vulnerable animals after big donations

Two BC SPCA donors have offered up to $65,000 in matching donations

Quarantined B.C. mom say pandemic has put special-needs families in ‘crisis mode’

Surrey’s Christine Williams shares family’s challenges, strengths

Anti-tax group calls for MPs, senators to donate scheduled pay raises to charity

Bill C-30, adopted 15 years ago, mandates the salary and allowance increases each calendar year

Liberals delay release of 75% wage subsidy details, costs: Morneau

Program will provide up to $847 per week for each worker

Most Read