Recently the Canadian government announced that they will be closing three-quarters of the offices for the Status of Women Canada starting April 1, 2007. Closing these offices is a symbol of the success of the women’s movement in Canada — the offices are no longer needed.

Of course, there are others who disagree with me. The Edmonton Sun quoted the head of New Brunswick’s women’s advisory counsel as saying “The impact is devastating…. It is a direct surgical attack on women and women’s equality.” Thankfully Mindelle Jacobs of the Sun had this to say in her editorial: “Good heavens. Can she be more over-the-top?”

Here’s what else Jacobs writes:

Ottawa could shut down the entire agency and it wouldn’t be missed. There are academics in women’s departments in universities across the country who research various aspects of the feminization of poverty. They’re welcome to it.

But if you polled marginalized women, they’d undoubtedly prefer concrete solutions to their problems, not more gender analysis.

You can probably guess where I’m heading here. Do we still need Status of Women Canada? We could get more bang for the buck using that money for other things.

The $5 million the agency is losing from its $23-million budget could fund 10 women’s shelters for a year. The agency’s entire budget could pay for a lot of job preparation courses and educational upgrading.

The Royal Commission on the status of women was created four decades ago when contraception and abortion were illegal, when a woman could get fired for getting pregnant, and when the salary gap was astronomical. No matter how much a woman earned, she couldn’t get a bank loan without her husband’s signature.

Those days are long gone. Canadian women are among the luckiest females on the planet. So it’s difficult to sympathize with the whiners who wallow in perpetual victimhood…. Let’s face it. Status of Women Canada is so 20th century.

Jacobs will no doubt be receiving hundreds of angry e-mails in response to her editorial, but I am sure that’s just a fraction of the number a man would receive for saying the same things. Really, this editorial had to be written by a woman, and I’m glad it was.

But Jacobs is not the only woman speaking out in support of the decision. Heritage Minister Bev Oda says that the government should be developing programs that “address the needs of both men and women.”

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