Kinesis, February 1998 Feb 1, 1998

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 February 1998  Women In View...pg16 CMPA $2.25  Black History Monti  Taking on the cops, prison guards  Women in China  and lots more...! Inside  KINESIS  #309-877 E. Hastings St.,  Vancouver, BC V6A 3Y1  Tel: (604)255-5499  Fax:(604)255-5511  Kinesis welcomes volunteers to work  on all aspects of the paper. Our next  Writers' Meeting is Tues Feb 3 and  Tues Mar 3 at our new office, 309-877  E. Hastings St. Production for the  Dec/Jan 1998 issue is from Feb 17-  24. All women welcome even if you  don't have experience.  Kinesis is published ten times a year  by the Vancouver Status of Women.  Its objectives are to be a non-  sectarian feminist voice for women  and to work actively for social change,  specifically combatting sexism,  racism, classism, homophobia,  ableism, and imperialism. Views  expressed in Kinesis are those of the  writer and do not necessarily reflect  VSW policy. All unsigned material is  the responsibility of the Kinesis  Editorial Board.  EDITORIAL BOARD  Fatima Jaffer, Liss  Haydon, Agnes Hi  PRODUCTION THI!  Fatima Jaffer, Leanne Keltie,  Pang, Robyn Hall. Mary Logan,  Dawson, Cynthia Low, Kelly Haydon,  Lissa Geller, Gloria Orangina, Agnes  Huang  Advertising: Sur Mel  Circulation: Audrey J(  Chrystai Fowl  Design: Barb Dawson, C\  Winnifred Tovey, Agnes  Typesetter: Sur"  FRONT COVI  Keisha Silvera, Makeda  Siobhan Dough  from the cover of Black  published by Sister Vi  (see centresprt  Photo by David Zap|  PRESS DATE  January 27, 1998  SUBSCRIPTIONS  Individual: $20 per year (+$1.40 GST  or what you can ai'    '  lnstitutions/Grou|  $45 per year (+$3.1  VSW Membership (include  Kinesis subscription):  $30 per year (+$1.40 GST)  SUBMISSIONS  Women and girls are welcome to  make submissions. We reserve the  fit and submission does not  publication. If possible,  ns should be typed, double  I and must be signed and  i address, telephone number  . Kinesis does not accept  ' fiction. Editorial guidelines  3 upon request.  DEADLINES  lures and reviews: 10th  News: 15th  and Bulletin Board: 18th  Display advertising  camera ready): 18th  jsign required): 16th  ced in the Canadian  eriodicals Index,  ^ress Index, and is ;  ;r of the Canadian Magazine  'ublishers Association.  ISSN 0317-9095  Publications mail registration #6426  KINESIS  %News About Women That's Not In The Dailies  News  Women's groups meet with Solicitor General 3  by Fatima Jaffer  Federal government pulls out of paying equity talks 4  by Kay Sinclair  Ten years after the SCC decision on abortion 5  by Joyce Arthur and Jo Dufay  No apology for off-reserve Aboriginal peoples? 6  by Fay Blaney  Features  Globalization and women in China 8  by Wang Xiajiang as told to Agnes Huang  Black women's studies course starts up at UBC   by Audrey M. Johnson  Women in the Philippines tackle imperialism 12  by Liza Largoza-Maza as told to Lisa Valencia-Svensson  Disclosure legislation still not protecting personal records 14  by Robyn Hall  Centrespread  "Hey! It was  my turn to  overreact!"  Sol Gen meeting on police, prisons 11  Good reads for Black History Month .,  by Ekua Reese  Arts  Review of Prozac Highway 15  by Lesley Zeigler  Preview of Women in View 16  by Leanne Johnson  Regulars  As Kinesis Goes to Press 2  Inside Kinesis 2  Movement Matters   compiled by Lissa Geller and Agnes Huang  What's News 7  compiled by Leanne Keltie and Lissa Geller  Bulletin Board 17  compiled by Kelly Haydon  Got a passion for print,  inspiration lor ink...  Then join us at one of our next  Kinesis Story meetings  Tuesday, February 3rd  or  Tuesday, march 3.  Always at 7:QQpm, and always at our  office, #309-877 E. fastings St.  For more info call Hgnes at  255-5499  FEBRUARY 1998 As Kinesis goes to press, the Liberal  government is preparing to unleash its next  federal budget on us (in late February, early  March).  Unlike in previous years, there has  been little outcry about what's in store.  That's mainly because this year's budget  is being billed as a "good news" budget  [and because the mainstream media is so engrossed with the sexual exploits of Bill Clinton.]  Although federal Finance Minister  Paul Martin keeps insisting the Liberal government is going to run a deficit this year  (of about $18 billion), most other forecasters predict a surplus. Thoughts are that  Martin wants to look good on "B"-day  when he announces what a "great job" his  government is doing in "controlling" the  deficit.  Of course, if Paul Martin would just  step back into reality for a bit, he might remember off whose backs the Liberals have  been getting this money to achieve a balanced budget. (He also then might figure  out that the impact of the Liberal's budgets has not been very "balanced" at all.)  April Fool's Day, 1996: that's the day  the Liberals' dreaded Canada Health and  Social Transfer came into effect; that's the  day when the federal government massively downloaded a lot of its responsibility and cost for providing critical social  programs; that's the day when the federal  government said bye bye to (all, but one)  national standards for welfare.  And that's just part of the Liberal government's dismal record. (Let's not get into  job creation...) Keeping all this in mind,  women cannot afford to be complacent in  our critical analysis before, during or after  the announcement of the federal budget.  Forecasters predict the surplus will fall  in the range of $5 to 10 billion. The word is  that the Liberals would use 50 percent of  the "fiscal dividend" for programs, and the  other 50 percent for paying down the debt.  It's not clear which "programs" would re  ceive additional monies, in the event of a  surplus.  Meanwhile, the Canadian Centre for  Policy Alternatives and CHOICES in Winnipeg will be releasing their Alternative  Federal Budget on February 10. The AFB  provides a different look at the possibilities for government revenues and expenditures. For a copy of the AFB contact  CCPA-BC at 801-5121 and CCPAin Ottawa  (613)563-1341.  A really big news item in the media  these days is the pending merger between  the Royal Bank and the Bank of Montreal-  the big banks get even bigger. A critical note  about the reaction to the merger is how the  mainstream media is not talking about its  link to the MAI. The Multilateral Agreement on Investments would open up the  financial markets of the 29 countries involved to foreign investors. Just like  NAFTA did for American Express, if the  MAI passes, other global banks could become key "players" in the Canadian financial services sector. That threat is likely  what's prompting the merger.  A federal "consultation" process slated  to begin the end of February relates to the  report from the Legislative Review Advisory Group on immigration and refugee  issues. The report, released in early January, involves 172 recommendations.  The Minister of Immigration Lucienne  Robillard is planning what she calls "extensive consultation" on the Advisory  Group's report. What this means is five one-  day consultation hearings: in Vancouver,  February 27; in Winnipeg, March 2; in Toronto, March 3; in Montreal, March 6; and  in Halifax, March 9.  This is not an adequate process to address such significant changes to legislation, says the Canadian Council for Refugees. The Council says the legislative re-  \/   A   N   C   O    U  Our appreciation to the f ollwoing supporters who became members, renewed their  subscriptions or donated to Vancouver Status of Women in December and January.  Jean Bennett * Judith Burke * Shauna Butterwick * Dorothy Chunn * Karen  Clark * Sharon Costello * Jo Coffey * Nancy Duff * Jean Elder * Mary Frey * Lynda  Griffiths * Darby Honeyman * Fatima Jaffer * Else Kennedy * Bonnie Klein * Valarie  Laub * Andrea Lebowitz * Abby Lippman * Ursula Litzcke * Joyce Lydiard * Wendy  Matsubuchi * Alyson Martin * Alice MacPherson '* Glenda MacPherson * Kathleen  MacRae * Arlene McLaren * Paule McNicoll * Margaret Mitchell * Cherie Nash *  Denise Nereida * Betty Nonay * Marilyn Pomfret * Geraldine Pratt * Margaret  Ostrowski * Joan Robillard * Hulda Roddan* Edna Rolston * Mary Schendlinger *  Helen Shore * Phyllis Stenson * Mary Woo Sims * Penelope Tilby * Carol Pettigrew  * Gisela Theurer * Hilda Thomas * Susan Wendell * Shelagh Wilson * Ellen  Woodsworth * Elaine Young * Communication Energy and Paperworkers Union Local  1129 * United Food and Commercial Workers * United Transportation Union Local  422 * VanCity Community Foundation * Vancouver Elementary School Teachers  Association  A special thanks to our donors who give every month. Monthly donations assist  VSW in establishing a reliable funding base to carry out our programs, services and Kinesis throughout the year. Thanks to:  Mary Frey * Lisser Geller * Jody Gordon * Erin Graham * Barbara Lebrasseur  * Eha Onno * Sheilah Thompson * Gale Tyler  view report is enormous and requires more  than just five days of hearings.  The consultations are also invitation-  only affairs; women who want to speak at  the hearing must apply to speak by February 6. The request must be in writing and  sent to: Renald Dussault, Secretariat, Legislative Review, Department of Citizenship  and Immigration, fax: (613) 946-946-0581.  Written briefs can also be submitted, but  must be in by March 9.  For a copy of the Advisory Group's  recommendations, check out the website:  http: / / /legrev.  February is upon us and that means  it's Black History Month. In this issue, Kinesis presents a number of books written  by Black women that would be great additions to any woman's bookshelf.  It is amazing to note that there still are  very few publishers-mainstream and small  press-bringing out books written by Black  women/feminists/lesbians. (Sister Vision  Press being the notable exception.) This just  highlights the need for us as a women's  movement to continue our anti-racism  work.  Hey, we just heard this...a new Women  and Pension Group has started up in Vancouver to provide information for women  (and public speakers) on the upcoming  changes to Canada's public pension system,  called by the federal Liberals "the Seniors  Benefits."  Before we's Vancouver  Downtown Eastside community activist  Ellen Woodsworth's pick for the quote of  the year, courtesy Preston Manning: "People may have second thoughts about the  wisdom of western-style capitalism and the  market-based economy," the Reform Party  leader told members of the Canada-Japan  Society of BC. "We have a political challenge in restoring faith in those types of  systems and economies."  Does this mean "that even the Reform  sees the holes in the vision of global capitalism? It's clear that the so-called global  economies are a disaster for people around  the world," says Woodsworth. "It also  means we [feminists, social justice activists,  et cetera] are winning!"  On that happy note, as Kinesis goes to  press is going to press.  This month Outside Kinesis, the rain is  fading away, but as is always the case with  Vancouver, may soon come again.  Inside Kinesis, things continue to be a  struggle. We lost another computer-crash,  crash, crash. Fortunately for us, no files  critical to this month's issue go trapped  inside that computer, and we were able to  go to press on time.  Because of our computer woes—two  hard drives and a monitor went down—is  there an anti-feminist conspiracy involved  here?—we have been unable to access our  e-mails for the past two months. We apologize to women who have sent us messages,  articles, et cetera. Hopefully, we'll be back  online this month.  Kinesis is calling on our supporters for  help in getting more computers. We need  486s or Pentiums so we can run the programs we use to get the paper to press. If  you can help or know of anyone able to donate a computer, call Agnes at 255-5499.  We have another request. What does  every feminist newspaper want? Why, a  feminist cartoonist, of course. We are also  looking for women to help us with our  feminist crossword puzzle, a regular feature we hope to debut in our March IWD  issue. Call if these ideas pique you.  We have an pology to make. We forgot  to do something several months ago in Inside Kinesis—and it could be partly because Fatima normally writes this column—and that was to thank Fatima Jaffer.  Fatima had taken on the job of Distribution  Coordinator temporarily to help Kinesis  until we completed our staff restructuring.  The "temporary" became extended, and  Fatima had to move on. Thanks Fatima for  making sure Kinesis always got out to our  readers.  Not to make the same mistake twice,  we would like to thank Swee Sim Tan, Kinesis' production coordinator for the past  year. Unfortunately in December, Swee Sim  came down with pneumonia, and is unable  to continue working for Kinesis. Thank you  Swee Sim for your incredible design work,  commitment and for pushing Kinesis  furthe into the world of scanning.  This month, Cynthia Low, Winnifred  Tovey and Barb Dawson all came in to help  out with the scanning of photos and designing of pages. We appreciate their work this  month. Thanks also goes out to Kinesis  typesetter Sur Mehat for her extra support  in the production room...and, of course, her  lovely poem on the back page.  Kinesis is happy to announce that  Kelly Haydon is joining the Editorial Board.  Kelly is a regular volunteer at Kinesis,  putting together Bulletin Board every  month and helping bring writers and volunteers into Kinesis. Kelly is a writer and  painter, and is in love with a puppy named  Emily. Thanks for taking that extra step,  Kelly, and joining the Ed Board.  This issue, we welcome new voices  into Kinesis: Lesley Ziegler, Jo Dufay Wang  Xiajiang, Liza Largoza-Maza and Ekua  Reese. Thank you all for your contributions.  And we also extend our welcome to  new production volunteer Gloria Orangina.  Thanks Gloria.  If you are interested in getting involved  with Kinesis, call Agnes at 255-5499 or drop  by to one of our next Story meetings: February 3rd and March 3rd at 7:00pm.  That's it for this month Inside Kinesis.  Have a great Black History Month.  CORRECTIONS  Oops. In our last issue oiKinesis, we misidentified Faye Edgar who gave the opening  prayer at the 2nd International Women's Conference Against APEC. Not only did we  spell her first name wrong, we also noted that she is from the Coast Salish Nation. Faye  Edgar is from the Nuxalk Nation in Bella Coola. Our apologies.  Also, an correction from last month's Movement Matters' listings. In the piece, "Violence against women study underway" an incorrect e-mail address was listed for FREDA,  the Feminist Research Education Development and Action Centre. Women wanting to e-  mail their comments and concerns for the study should direct them to  FEBRUARY 1998 News   Consultations with the Solicitor General Andy Scott:  Women demand leadership on  policing, prisons  by Fatima Jaffer  So what does the solicitor general of  Canada (Sol Gen) do anyway? And why  should we care?  Women from some national, provincial  and Lower Mainland groups got together  for three days in January to talk about just  that, in a consultation paid for by the office  of the Solicitor General Andy Scott. Scott is  the Liberal government's man in charge  primarily of crime prevention, policing and  corrections issues.  It was an unprecedented event—the  first time women from the independant  Canadian women's movement met on a  national level to discuss women's issues  with a Sol Gen. Long and detailed presentations by women raised critical issues  [transcripts of which will run in next month's  issue o/Kinesis.]  By the end of the three days, the Sol  Gen told women he is committed to an  open door policy for equality-seeking  women—"I'll still be Andy to you." More  importantly, several of the women lauded  the meeting for being productive and a tremendous legitimization of the experience  and power of the women's movement.  But just as most efforts to get ministers to listen to the concerns of women, this  meeting started out no differently. Kim Pate  of the Canadian Association of Elizabeth  Fry Societies (women-prisoners rights  groups) was approached in September to  convene a meeting for the Sol Gen "with  equality seeking women." However,  bureacracy stalled and the meeting was not  confirmed until early January. That gave  Pate less than two weeks to pull together a  three-day meeting.  About 20 women attended a two-day  meeting on January 21st and 22nd to discuss issuesof corrections, policing and  'crime prevention.' 'Crime prevention' was  reidentified by the women as 'social justice.'  Most of the women were deemed to  be 'experts' in the areas being discussed.  However, they did not reflect the true  make-up of the majority of women in the  prisons, nor women on the recieving end  of violence on the streets or in the home—  namely, Aboriginal women, refugee  women, women of colour and poor or  working class women.  By the time the sessions started, 24  women were in attendance. They included  representatives from the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centres (CASAC), the  National Action Committee on the Status  of Women (NAC), the Aboriginal Women's  Action Network (AWAN), the Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC),  DisAbled Women's Network Canada  (DAWN), Strength in Sisterhood,  PAUKTUUTJT: The Inuit Women's Association, the Federation des femmes du Quebec,  transition house workers, feminist lawyers,  prostitutes rights activists and street youth  workers.  The meetings ended with a two-hour  closed-door session with the Sol Gen on  January 22nd.  On January 23rd, the Sol Gen's National Reference Group on Women's Issues  was held with about 80 people.  Of the 28 participants who would get  to address the Sol Gen directly on matters  pertaining to his mandate, only a handful  were equality-seeking women. The rest  were members of police, parole board and  other parts of the criminal justice system  and government. Most women from feminist organizations were invited as "observers," who were only to participate in small  group sessions that would report back to  the Sol Gen.  On the eve of the National Reference  Group, the 24 women in the pre-meetings  presented the Sol Gen not only with demands relating to his mandate, but with an  ultimatum about the  following day's meeting: change your consultation model; listen  to women's equality-  seeking groups because they are the experts in what you need  to improve a system  that is not working;  give them a voice and  seat at the table.  "We didn't understand how the organizers thought we  would want to sit there  and listen to our abusers from the police and  prison systems talk to us about social justice, equality and women's issues," says  Fay Blaney of NAC and AWAN.  Next morning, more than twice as  many people took seats at the table than  had been originally planned, with the Sol  Gen at its head. In most of the "unnamed"  seats were women from feminist organizations. There was only one representative of  Inuit women, and less than a handful of  Aboriginal women.  Many systems and government representatives took observer seats away from  the table. One police officer left after he refused to remove his gun at the request of  women and the Sol Gen.  "Once women were at the table, it set  a different tone," says Lee Lakeman of  CASAC. "The Minister was seen to be supporting us, and his officials followed."  The opening round gave each "participant" two minutes to introduce themselves  and and raise critical issues. Despite the intimidating atmosphere, a lot of issues were  effectively raised, with surprisingly fair attention by the Sol Gen being given to  women of colour and Aboriginal women's  concerns.  A key point was the message the women's groups were bringing to the table was  not new; that crime prevention cannot be  acheived in an unequal and sexist world;  and that 25 years of an organized women's  movement have already exposed some sexist, homophobic, abelist and classist poli  cies, procedures and behaviour of systems  people.  Noteworthy is that it was still largely  Aboriginal women and/or women of colour who included racism as a factor when  addressing discrimination by the police or  prison systems. And when a blatant racist  comment was made by a government employee, it fell upon an Aboriginal woman—  Viola Thomas—to challenge her. The inaction by the chair was later raised by an impromptu Aboriginal women and women of  colour caucus, and the chair apologised.  Issues raised included the shoot-to-kill  policies and inaction of RCMP officers; the  near impossibility of holding them accountable; the rapes and brutalizations of Aboriginal women by police; condemnation of  "Hey! It was  my turn to  overreact!"  the closure of women-only halfway houses  that provide support for women leaving the  prison system; and the wasting of money  on a DNA databank that is essentially ineffective from a scientific perspective in curbing or solving crimes.  There were also a couple of stunning  admissions by systems people.  Superintendant Bruce Elwood of the Criminal Investigations Division of Hamilton-  Wentworth in Ontario told the Sol Gen how  800 police officers in his division had received training on how to deal with wife  assault. In the course of the training, he said  the police had to arrest 11 of the officers on  wife assault charges themselves.  The morning session ended with a  rousing, impromptu speech by Viola Thomas of the United Native Nations, urging  the Sol Gen to show leadership as head of  policing and prisons to use his power for  radical social change, not political opportunism and apathy like his colleagues in the  Liberal government.  The afternoon was spent in small-  group discussions. Women from women's  organizations broke away from the official  agenda, forming their own group to which  the Sol Gen was invited and attended. We  raised and elaborated on numerous policing and corrections issues as they impact  on women, poor people, Aboriginal peoples and women of colour.  Often women who had been at the two-  day pre-meeting referred to a series of de  mands that were presented to the Sol Gen.  The main demands, according to Lakeman  of CASAC, are as follows:  • that police and prisons be used in  the service of Charter equality rights to establish and protect the equality of women,  poor people, and so on;  • that civil control over police is essential and a Civilian Oversight Committee, independant of the police, be struck to  effectively direct policy, procedures and  behaviour of the police;  • that external review mechanism also  be imposed on prisons for the enforcement  of the rights of prisoners;  • that contact between women prisoners and non-governmental organizations,  particularly women's equality-seeking organizations and community  groups be encouraged rather  than disallowed;  • Aboriginal women demanded that other models such  as an Aboriginal Elders Council be struck to advise Correctional Services of Canada;  • that women prisoners be  allowed to attend prorgams at  women's and other equality-  seeking organizations;  • that within prisons, it is  important to get rid of the classifications system that either  labels women, primarily Aboriginal and other marginalized  women, as crazy or dangerous,  particularily within maximum security  prisons; that prisons should proceed on an  assumption of dangerouslessness—an assumption that it is safe to let any woman  out of jail; none pose a danger to society  except those some who may require mental health support;  • that women should not be housed  in male prisons;  •that all prison facilities should take  instruction from the successes of the Healing Lodge in Saskatchewan.  As well, women demanded and the Sol  Gen agreed to another National Reference  Group Meeting on Women's Issues next  year separate from systems officials—that  is, only with women's equality-seeking  groups in attendance. This would be in  addition to women's participation at meetings with systems representatives.  Throughout, women repeatedly reminded the Sol Gen of their intention to follow up and hold him to his promises, and  push for his assistance in finding funding  for 'crime prevention' initiatives such as  transition houses, a national meeting of  women working in the transition house  movement, and other demands towards  ending violence against women.  Fatima jaffer attended the Sol Gen's National  Reference Group on Women's Issues. Thanks  to Fay Blaney, Jodi Nippi, Kim Pate and Lee  Lakeman for their input and comments.  FEBRUARY 1998 News  Women and pay equity in Canada:  13 years and still stalling  by Kay Sinclair  On December 1, 1997, thousands of  federal government workers across the  country left their worksites and made noise  for 13 minutes. Why? To protest the federal government denying pay equity to  women in the federal public service for 13  years.  Brian Mulroney's Conservative government stalled and delayed for nine years.  Not to be outdone, Jean's Chretien's Liberal government has continued this fine  Tory tradition.  The Public Service Alliance of Canada  (PSAC) filed a complaint with the Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC)  in December 1984 on behalf of the 50,000  mainly women members of the CR (clerical workers) bargaining unit. The complaint  was filed under the equal pay for work of  equal value section of the Canadian Human Rights Act—an act ironically brought  into law in 1977 by the Liberal government  of the day.  The PSAC contended that women in  the public service were paid less than men  for doing work of equal value. The unequal  pay in the public service goes back to the  1940s and 1950s when unmarried women  were hired into mainly clerical, secretarial  and typist jobs and paid a lot less than men.  Until 1957, women who married were  forced to leave their jobs in the public service.  Workplace and unions in the federal  government were white male dominated.  The percentage increases in workers' wages  won by unions in the 1960s and 1970s only  served to widen the gap between women's  and men's wages. Women were clearly subordinate and women's concerns ridiculed  or dismissed in this culture.  It wasn't until women began organizing in their workplaces and unions that pay  equity became an issue. The culmination  of women's organizing and mobilizing  came in 1980 when the CRs went out on  strike—the largest strike in the PSAC's history to that point.  The women strikers, pulling the male  leadership in their wake, walked off the job  to fight for decent pay increases, protection  from sexual harassment, maternity leave,  and for dignity and respect. Women who  had never been involved in the union before led the strike.  The CR strike was a factor in PSAC filing the human rights complaint in 1984.  The federal government reluctantly agreed  to take part in a joint union-employer equal  pay study with the PSAC and other federal unions. On March 8, 1985 it was announced that: the jobs in nine female-dominated groups including clerical workers,  secretaries, typists and data processors  would be compared to 53 male-dominated  groups.  The study took four years to complete  and involved 4,300 federal government  workers completing detailed questionnaires of their jobs. These questionnaires  were sent to evaluation committees which  were comprised of equal numbers of union and employer (Treasury Board) representatives. Four out of six evaluators had  to agree on the point ratings based on skill,  effort, responsibility, and working conditions.  As a result of this arduous process,  women's jobs were found to be paid 10 to  25 percent less than men's jobs of equal  value. Secretaries and building supervisors  were valued equally, yet secretaries were  paid $3,300 less per year. Typists and  In April, while several hundred PSAC  activists were at the union's convention in  Toronto, the Liberal government leaked a  story to the Toronto Star newspaper that it  had made a pay equity offer to PSAC. This  was news to the union.  The government then tried to get PSAC  members to sign away any further claim  by accepting the pittance it was offering.  " LB* MY  deckhands were rated the same value—  guess which group was paid $5,000 less per  year.  The federal government was less than  overjoyed. These were not the results they  were looking for. In 1990, trying to evade  its full pay equity responsibility, the government unilaterally paid equal pay adjustments to two of the female-dominated  groups, but only at about one-quarter of  what women were actually owed. The government had ignored 95 percent of the  study results.  The PSAC filed another complaint  with the CHRC. In January 1991, a pay equity tribunal of three people—a social  worker and two lawyers—was appointed  to decide the case. Thus began an incredible series of obstruction and delaying tactics on the part of the federal government.  Treasury Board procedural and legal  challenges ranged from arguing that the Tribunal did not have jurisdiction to the study  results were biased against men. The Tribunal heard testimony and evidence from  1991 to 1997, interspersed with Treasury  Board protests, court challenges and general whining.  In February 1996, the Tribunal ruled  that the equal pay study results were valid.  After that decision, the Tribunal heard arguments on how best to close the wage gap,  how much money is owed to women, and  on retroactivity, interest, damages and costs.  During these hearings, the Treasury  Board argued against damages for lost opportunities, saying women "are not victims  as they choose to work in occupations  where wages are low."  The hearings finally came to an end in  January 1997. The Tribunal has been weighing the evidence since that time.  "All of this was done when there were  fewer union activists and staff to provide  advice and information," said Regina  Brennan, Vancouver PSAC regional representative. "Members didn't fall for it."  Many faxed their answer: "it's a nice down  payment, but we want it all."  That tactic having failed, pay equity  negotiations started in May between PSAC  and Treasury Board. The Treasury Board  made an offer of $850 million while PSAC's  position was that $2 billion was required  to close the wage gap.  From May to December, the Treasury  Board walked away from the talks three  times, each time placing full page ads in  Ottawa newspapers with inflated information about their latest offer and bogus information about PSAC's position. Similar  information was fed to federal government  workers through departmental channels in  an attempt to convince or scare union members to accept their offer. (We are talking  about mainly women who earn $24,000 to  $29,000 a year, who have had their wage  frozen for seven years, and who have been  denied pay equity for 13 years.) This is another example of the caring Liberal government of the 1990s.  It's not for lack of trying that PSAC  members have not gotten pay equity. Members have filed thousands of grievances,  sent countless faxes, letters and petitions,  lobbied members of parliament (MPs) and  cabinet ministers, and occupied their offices. Members have worn pay equity ribbons in the workplace, handed out leaflets  and balloons, and held pay equity barbecues and picnics.  Last year around Thanksgiving, members brought in stale bread and dead flowers to send to Liberal cabinet ministers like  [Treasury Board President] Marcel Masse  and Hedy Fry [secretary of state for the status of women.] After Halloween, members  piled pumpkins outside their workplace  with the slogan: "Waiting for pay equity is  like waiting for the Great Pumpkin." Many  of these activities were thought of and organized by PSAC women's committees.  Retired women are also part of the fight  for pay equity. These are women who  earned low wages when they worked for  the federal government and now receive  pensions they can't live on. In 1993-94, the  average federal government pension for  women was $9,444 a year, while male pensioners received $17,438 a year.  Women's groups have taken up the  struggle—at the last annual general meeting of the National Action Committee on  the Status of Women, the membership  passed a resolution making pay equity part  of NAC's Priority Campaign for this year.  A poll commissioned by the Treasury  Board released last July shows that PSAC  has public support for its pay equity case.  Fifty five percent of 1,325 Canadians surveyed believe women working for the federal government should be paid the same  for work of equal value even if it means  higher salaries than in the private sector.  More than half of those surveyed said they  would be willing to pay higher taxes to  cover equal pay.  The poll showed there was little support for full retroactivity of pay equity payments. However, the people surveyed were  almost certainly unaware of the start date  of PSAC's complaint or the government's  responsibility for creating the lengthy retroactive period.  As recently as September, Masse threatened to legislate an end to PSAC's pay equity complaint. In response, union members and supporters phoned and faxed MPs  and organized workplace and community  actions. The Liberal government didn't introduce legislation but the union will be  ready in case the threat resurfaces.  The Treasury Board's last offer in August was $1.3 billion, with an ultimatum of  "take it or leave it." While this may seem  to be an impressive amount of money, when  it is divided among 70,000 current employees and up to 120,000 retired and former  employees over the past 13 years, it is less  impressive. Nor does Treasury Board's offer include interest, even though they argued for simple interest before the Tribunal. (This only rewards the federal government for breaking the law all these years.)  The PSAC tabled a counter-offer in  October: $2.2 billion needed to close the  wage gap, simple interest rather than compound interest, and modified damages  claim.  Just two months later, on December 8,  while the PSAC and Treasury Board negotiators were apparently meeting to discuss  their respective positions, Masse held a  press conference announcing that the Treasury Board was walking away from the pay  equity talks—yet again.  see PAY EQUITY next page  FEBRUARY 1998 News  Women's access to abortion in Canada:  The last ten years  In January, women across Canada marked  the anniversary of an important statement affirming women's right to make decisions concerning our bodies and our lives. Ten years ago,  the Supreme Court of Canada handed down a  ruling which decriminalized abortions. Since  then, abortions remain legal, but access to abortion services is limited for many women and  may be in further jeopardy in the near future.  Below, Joyce Arthur of the British Columbia Coalition for Abortion Clinics (BCCAC)  explains some of the reasoning behind the Supreme Court of Canada's decision and what it  means for women's reproductive rights. And  Jo Dufay, executive director of the Canadian  Abortion Rights Action League (CARAL)  gives her comments on where we are now, a  decade after the landmark court decision.  What the Supreme  Court decision means  for women  by Joyce Arthur  January 28,1998 marks the tenth anniversary of the historic Morgentaler decision  when the Supreme Court of Canada declared Canada's restrictive abortion law  unconstitutional, and handed down reproductive freedom to all Canadian women.  The court ruled on the fate of three  doctors that day, including Dr. Henry  Morgentaler. The doctors had been charged  with conspiracy to perform abortions under Canada's nearly 20-year old abortion  law—Section 251 of the Criminal Code.  The SCC decision was a decisive 5-2  ruling, using tough and forthright language  to dispense with [the law.] The anti-abortion law was found to be in breach of Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and  Freedoms in several different ways. (This  section guarantees life, liberty and security  of the person.)  First, as Justice Bertha Wilson stated:  "The right to liberty contained in Section 7  guarantees to every individual a degree of  personal autonomy over important decisions intimately affecting his or her private  life...The decision whether or not to terminate a pregnancy is essentially a moral decision, and in a free and democratic society, the conscience of the individual must  be a paramount to that of the state."  Second, Chief Justice Brian Dickson  wrote: "State interference with bodily integrity and serious state-imposed psychological stress...constitutes a breach of security of the person. Section 251 clearly interferes with a woman's physical integrity."  By this he meant women's rights over  their own bodies were violated by forcing  them to endure prolonged delays in obtaining therapeutic abortions at hospitals.  These delays, which served to increase  the medical and psychological risks to  women, were caused by the mandatory  procedures of Section 251. Women had to  apply and wait for approval from a three-  doctor therapeutic abortion committee  (TAC), which was supposed to base its decision on whether or not the pregnancy  posed a risk to the woman's life or health.  Third, the Court looked at the practicality of the law, and found it to be seriously flawed because it presented unreasonable obstacles to women seeking abortions. In practice, TACs at some big-city  hospitals would rubber-stamp all applications (using a liberal definition of the word  "health"), while at many other hospital,  TACs would refuse to approve any abortions except in extreme circumstances.  Also, during the 1980s, anti-choice activists often succeeded in taking over hospital boards, at which point, they would  either disband the TACs entirely or tighten  the controls so that no abortions would be  approved. As a result of such problems, the  law had resulted in access to abortion becoming unequal, uncertain and inconsistent from one community to the next.  PAY EQUITY from previous page  The talks have not resumed and they  don't appear likely to resume in the near  future.  Women workers may have to wait for  the Tribunal to make its decision, and although the PSAC expects it to be favourable, that's not certain. The Tribunal decision is also subject to appeal by either party.  From the PSAC's perspective, it is better to negotiate an agreement with the support and actions of members rather than  waiting for a third party to decide their fate.  A negotiated agreement would also not be  subject to appeal.  While the PSAC has been fighting to  achieve pay equity for CAS, typists and  data processors, the federal government  has been systematically eliminating their  jobs. In 1994, there were over 50,000 CAS;  in 1996, there were less than 38,000. Secretaries and word processors were cut from  10,200 to 5,500 and data processors went  from 2,000 to l,100.Alotof these jobs were  automated completely away, put into other  jobs, or contracted out.  "The way they have treated our pay  equity complaint, the federal government  shows no respect for women workers,"  says Carole Renaud, union activist and CR.  "We have subsidized the government long  enough, where the hell is our pay equity."  It is critical in whatever way the outcome is decided that the wage gap between  women and men in the federal government  is closed. Because of the scope of the case,  achieving pay equity will fundamentally  improve the economic status of many  women in Canada. And besides, women  have earned it.  The PSAC is planning pay equity actions  against the federal budget [to be released at the  end of February] and around International  Women's Day.  Kay Sinclair is a devoted Revenue Canada  employee and a member of the PSAC Vancouver Women's Committee.  Indeed, for women living in remote  areas, abortion was all but unavailable,  unless they had the time and money to  travel. This unfair application of the law  clearly interferes with Section 7 rights and  contributed to the ultimate failure of the  law.  In spite of the clear decision against the  law, however, the Court left open the possibility of recriminalizing abortion under  certain circumstances. It even suggested a  framework under which the state could  have increasingly greater control over later  stages of pregnancy than earlier ones.  So it was no surprise when Brian  Mulroney's Conservative government introduced Bill C-43 in 1990. Under this bill,  the woman's own doctor would bear ultimate responsibility for the decision, with a  two-year jail sentence hanging over the  doctor's head if the abortion was performed for reasons other than the woman's  health.  After significant lobbying by both pro-  choice forces and anti-choice forces against  the bill (the antis thought the new law  wasn't strong enough), it was defeated in  the Senate in January 1991 by a tie vote.  Since then, no replacement law has been  introduced, and the current Liberal government has said it will not do so.  Today, because of the complete absence  of any iaw on abortion, it now has the same  status as any other routine medical procedure under the Canada Health Act. And no  criminal law is needed, of course, because  women don't make casual decisions to  abort their nine-month old fetuses, contrary  to silly propaganda from the opposition. In  any case, no Canadian doctor performs past  20 weeks, except for health or genetic reasons.  In spite of Canada's clear pro-choice  majority, there is much room for improvement. Access is still difficult for women living outside major centres and lack of funding in many provinces often means delays  and hardship for poor women seeking  abortions.  A declining pool of abortion providers due to retirement, combined with the  increase in anti-choice harassment and violence is also putting existing and future  abortion services at greater risk. So, even  as we celebrate our victories, we must remain vigilant to protect them, and continue  working hard to build on them.  Excerpted from Pro-Choice Press, the newsletter of the BCCAC.  Assessing our victory  by Jo Dufay  Ten years ago, in a ruling which ripped  through anti-choice rhetoric, Canada's Supreme Court struck abortion from the  Criminal Code. Women, on the steps of the  courts screamed "We won!" as the hated  abortion law crumbled to dust.  Those were heady days, and we were  right to celebrate—it was a landmark vic  tory. What we didn't know, though, was  that ten years later we would be working  for basic access, struggling to ensure funding and fighting off threats to our rights all  at the same time.  It's a much more complicated picture  than we expected, and made ugly and  bloody by a series of extremist attacks on  the lives of doctors who provide this legal,  medical service.  In this past couple of months, the Supreme Court has again affirmed a woman's  right to control her own body, including  when she is pregnant [referring to the G. case,  involving a Winnipeg woman who had been  court ordered into a drug treatment centre to  protect her foetus.] But we have also seen the  beginning of legislative attempts (in our  federal parliament and in Alberta) to take  away that right.  We celebrate the anniversary of the  decriminalization of abortion at the same  time that we lobby politicians and express  our outrage that women in Prince Edward  Island have no abortion services. The government of British Columbia has begun to  provide funding for medical abortions using methotrexate, yet the safer and more  effective drug RU 486 is still not available  in Canada. We have come a long way, but  cannot yet rest.  Perhaps the most immediate threat to  a woman's right to choose comes from the  potential unavailability of people willing  and trained to provide abortion services.  Most medical schools fail to ensure that  doctors are taught how to perform this operation, or how to provide appropriate care  for women going through this relatively  commonplace experience.  Doctors, nurses and counsellors may  not receive the support they need for continuing education related to abortion services. And, alarmingly, many doctors are  deterred by the threat of violence—not too  surprising when you remember Dr. Jack  Fainman of Winnipeg, was the third Canadian abortion provider shot close to Remembrance Day, in a four year period.  [Fainman, a Winnipeg obstetrician/  gynecologist, was shot in his home on November 11, 1997. Hamilton gynecologist Hugh  Short was shot in his home on November 10,  1995. The recent attacks on abortion service  providers in Canada started with the shooting  ofGarson Romalis, a Vancouver gynecologist,  in his home on November 8, 1994. Another  Hamilton doctor who provides abortion services is still receiving death threats. And on November 12,1996, butyric acid was dumped on  the Edmonton Morgentaler Clinic]  On the 10th anniversary of the day  when Canadian women definitively won  the right to choose, CARAL will be releasing a report looking at where we've come  and where we need to go. As well, CARAL  and Dr. Henry Morgentaler will be announcing a special fund to support future  providers to ensure that abortion services  will not become impossible to access, or  worse yet, extinct.  Excerpted from Pro-Choice News, the newsletter of the CARAL.  FEBRUARY 1998 Movement Matters  listings information  Movement Matters is designed to  be a network of news, updates and  information of special interest to the  women's movement.  Submissions to Movement  Matters should be no more than 500  words, typed, double spaced and may  be edited for length. Deadline is the  18th of the month preceding  publication.  compiled by Lissa Geller and  Agnes Huang   Funding for women's  organizations  With the federal budget set to come  down in February, a coalition of national  and Quebec women's organizations have  stepped up their pressure on the Liberal  government to increase funding to support  the critical work of women's organizations.  The Women's Fair Share Campaign  says that, currently, the federal government  spends only 53 cents a year for every  woman and girl in Canada through its  Women's Program funding.  Federal funding for women's organizations has been slashed by $5 million since  1989. In fact, no new equality-seeking  group has received program (core) funding since 1987.  In 1996-97, the overall budget for  Women's Programs—which has been,  along with the Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women, absorbed into  Status of Women Canada—was $8.1 million. The funding is spread among 350 organizations across the country.  Francoise David, president of the  Federation des femmes du Quebec, says the  coalition is calling on the federal government to commit at least a "twoonie" to each  woman and girl. "Two dollars per woman  in Canada represents less than one-half of  one percent of the total defense budget of  Canada," says David.  This would mean increasing the Women's Programs budget to $30 million a year.  The coalition says the monies should be  used to restore and augment funding for  existing groups and provide monies for  new equality-seeking groups; and to ensure  a stable funding base by continuing to provide core as well as project funding.  The Women's Fair Share Campaign is  focussing on educating individual members of parliament and the general public  about the important role carried out by  women's organizations, at the national,  provincial/territorial and local levels.  For more information about the campaign,  contact the National Action Committee on the  Status of Women at 1-800-665-5124; or the  Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women at (613) 563-0681.  Montreal Health Press  celebrates birthday  For three decades, the Montreal Health  Press has been publishing information on  a variety of topics relating to women's  health. This year, the press will celebrate  30 years of providing "clear non-judgemental information to large numbers of people." In fact, the Press prides itself on presenting to women not only facts, but the  analysis and social context which give  meaning to the facts.  As recognition of the organization's  critical work, the Canadian Abortion Rights  Action League (CARAL) awarded the  Montreal Health Press its 1997 Choice  Award for its efforts to provide information to women and their partners on a variety of subjects related to sexual health,  including STDs, sexual assault, birth control and menopause. CARAL says the  groundbreaking work of the Montreal  Department of Indian Affairs announcement  Deep regret only if you're on-reserve  by Fay Blaney   Jane Stewart, Minister of Indian Affairs, made a public statement on January  7,1998. She said the government "deeply  regretted" what it had done to several generations of Aboriginal children who were  abused in residential schools.  There was a great deal of debate over  the difference between "regret" and "apology" and, of course, the bottom line involved how much money it would cost the  government to address the harm caused to  Aboriginal peoples.  Minister Stewart confined her consultations to meeting with Phil Fontaine, Assembly of First Nations Grand Chief, and  her announcement reflected that. She  stated that $350 million would be provided  to address issues arising from abuses committed against Aboriginal children in residential schools. And she continually held  up the BC First Nations Summit as the  model to be followed.  Our experience here in BC is that this  Reserve-based organization and the RCMP  investigation, commenced in 1994, has excluded off-Reserve Aboriginal peoples,  despite the fact that over 70 percent of us  live in cities.  A gender breakdown of the statistics  indicates that the majority of off-reserve  residents are women and conversely, those  remaining on-reserve are men. Another  neglected group in this investigation are  our people in the prisons.  Many abuse survivors have greatly  suffered in their adulthood with problems  such as violence, addictions, depression,  suicide and imprisonment. Particularly  we've struggled with the loss of parenting  abilities and hence we're targeted for child  apprehension. These are things that we in  Vancouver and other urban areas, and in  prisons, experience quite acutely.  Yet the minister continues to neglect  the federal government's fiduciary responsibility to us.  This week The Vancouver Sun ran a  front page article on how great the demand  is on the First Nations Summit, justifying  the ministers' upcoming meeting with  them, and presumably giving them BC's  share of the $350 million  So Stewart's "deep regret" applies only  if you live on-reserve!  Fay Blaney is with AWAN (the Aboriginal  Women's Action Network.)  Health Press has been "an essential element  in the successes achieved by the pro-choice  movement."  The Press' first publication—its "Birth  Control Handbook"—came out of the student union council at McGill University in  1968. From there, the Montreal Health Press  emerged as a feminist collective in 1972 and  produced the "VD Handbook" (later renamed the STD Handbook.) Seven years  later, its handbook on sexual assault was  published; and in 1988, the Press' "Book on  Menopause" came out.  Each year, the Montreal Health Press  distributes around 70,000 of its handbooks.  Over the life of the Press, millions of the  inexpensive booklets, appropriately updated, are used across the continent in  medical and educational institutions and  are published in French and English.  The Press has recently updated its  handbook on sexual assault to include partner assault and the abuse of people with  disabilities. As well, its menopause handbook has been reorganized and revamped  and its handbook on birth control and STDs  has undergone minor revisions.  For afidl list of available handbooks or to  order copies, contact the Montreal Health  Press, PO Box 1000, Station Place du Pare,  Montreal, Quebec, H2W2N1; tel: (514) 282-  1171; fax: (514) 282-0262; website: http:// Individual copies  are $5 each and bulk copies are as little as $1  each.  [Information from Pro-Choice News,  Winter 97-98]  Women with disabilities  form group  As a result of contacts made two years  ago at the 4th World Conference on Women  in Beijing, women disability rights activists  are organizing internationally.  Last summer, grassroots organizers  from 27 countries came together at the  Women's Institute on Leadership and Disability Conference in Eugene, Oregon to  compare strategies and develop connections to build stronger global links for disability rights activists. Another conference  last year-the International Leadership Forum for Women with Disabilities—drew  over 600 delegates from 82 countries to  Bethesda, Maryland.  The Internet and the World Wide Web  have been critical in bringing women with  disabilities together to fight for common  goals and build international links. Since  the summer gatherings, disabled women's  Web pages has sprouted. Cal-WILD, and  interactive online service, has grown to  more than 100 subscribers from 23 countries.  Another project disability rights activists have been working on is a loan fund  for women with disabilities. This is critical  because women with disabilities experience  higher than average unemployment rates,  so for many self-employment may be the  only viable solution. Many women with  disabilities are denied credit to start their  own businesses.  Mobility International USA (MIUSA),  which sponsored the Women's Institute, has  produced a video and book documenting the  work that took place at the Institute. Called  "Loud, Proud and Passionate: Including  Women with Disabilities in International Development Programs," the materials are available by contacting MIUSA at PO Box 10767,  Eugene, Oregon, 97440 USAor online at http:/  International Women's  Day in Vancouver  The International Women's Day Committee in Vancouver is inviting women to  join us in celebrating our struggles and successes. Throughout the week of March 2-7  the committee is asking women's organizations and individual women to organize  and participate in forums, workshops, concerts, theatre, movies, and more.  Some of the topics being addressed are:  violence against women, anti-racism, Aboriginal women's struggles, health and reproductive rights, heterosexism and homophobia, women's unpaid work,  feminization of poverty and the labour  force, among others.  A rally and march will start at 11:00 am  on Saturday March 7 at the Vancouver Art  Gallery and proceed to the Landmark Hotel and Conference Centre at 1400 Robson  St., followed by an afternoon of entertainment and information tables until 4:30 pm.  Our traditional women's dance will  begin at 9:00 pm in the Gallery Room of  the Landmark Hotel.  For more information, please call Ema  Oropeza at Vancouver Status of Women,  255-6554. To book a table, please call 708-  9491.  It's that time of year again!  RRSP    SEASON  » Excellent rates on fixed and variable terms  > RRSP loans available  » Funds support community development  Deadline: March 2nd, 1998  Come in now, don't wait for the deadline!  or callus at 254-4100  CCEC is now offering mutual funds...  the Family of Ethical Funds.  CCEC Credit Union  FEBRUARY 1998 What's News  compiled by Lissa Geller and  Leanne Keltie  Abortion in Alberta  Access to abortion continues to be a  major problem in Alberta. Services for  women seeking abortions in Ralph Klein's  province continue to be restricted to only  three facilities. And pro-choice advocates  inAlberta say that even though funding of  abortion services was started in July 1,1996,  fewer abortions are being provided outside  Edmonton and Calgary.  Currently, women needing abortions  can obtain those services in Grande Prairie, Calgary and Edmonton; outside those  communities, abortion services are nonexistent. As well, although women in Edmonton have free access to both the hospital and clinic in Edmonton, this is not the  case in Calgary where access is restricted  and there is a two week or more waiting  list.  [The Morgentaler clinic in Edmonton was  also the target of a Butyric acid attack on November 12,1996, coinciding with theanniver-  sary of the shootings of doctors in Vancouver,  Winnipeg and Hamilton who provide abortion  services.]  On a slightly positive note, there have  been a few court victories. Anti-choice activists lost an important case this year when  the Appeal Court upheld an earlier decision to allow a "bubble zone" around  Calgary's Kensington Clinic to prevent harassment from anti-choice protestor Michael  O'Malley. O'Malley was ordered to pay  costs and forbidden from bringing the clinic  back to court until the costs and his fine  were paid.  Another court decision forced anti-  choicers to move their "prayer circle" outside of the sight of the clinic in order to preserve the bubble zone.  Despite these recent court decisions  and a Supreme Court ruling that the foetus  has no rights under the Canadian Charter  of Rights and Freedoms, the province of  Alberta is currently considering amending  its child welfare legislation which would  protect the "fetus". Alberta is the only prov- :  ince considering such legislation.  [Information from Pro-Choice News,  Winter 97-98]  Banks: Why we hate  them so much  People working for minimum wage  continue to lose ground in their struggle to  stay above the poverty line, according to  recent figures from Statistics Canada. In  1975, minimum wage was 122 percent of  the poverty line for a single person; today  it is less than 88 percent of the poverty line.  In order for the minimum wage to have  kept its position with respect to the poverty line, it would have be $9.90 an hour  (based on a 37.5 hour work week). None of  the provincial governments nor the federal  government provides workers even close  to this base level.  At the same time that working women  and men continue to lose ground, Canada's  banks are reporting another year of record  profits. The big six banks (including Royal,  Bank of Montreal, CIBC, Toronto Dominion, National Bank and the Scotia Bank)  made over $7 billion last year, a 20 percent  increase over its previous year's record.  As well, the accounting firm Ernst and  Young reports that Canada now has triple  the number of millionaires as it had ten  years ago with 220,000 people reporting  incomes of over $1 million on their tax returns.  While people receiving welfare entitlements in BC (and likely in most provinces)  are getting less than they got in 1982, banks  and other wealthy Canadians continue to  enjoy $1.4 billion in tax breaks last year.  [Information from The Long Haul, January 1998]  Protesters guilty of  blocking clinic  Two anti-choice protestors in Vancouver plead guilty on January 7 after being  arrested and charged with contravening the  BC Access to Abortion Services Act. The act  prohibits protesting within 50 metres of an  abortion clinic.  Lane Walker and Jennifer Ziemann  were arrested outside the Everywoman's  Health Centre where clinic staff arriving for  work discovered the two protesters blocking access to the clinic with plastic locking  devices across the outside door.  Patients and staff were forced to wait  for an hour alongside the protesters even  after police were called. According to clinic  staff, police action was slow and unresponsive, putting staff and clients at risk.  Clinic staff later learned that police and  media had been fully aware of the illegeal  protest the previous day, but had done  nothing to either stop the protestors or inform the clinic.  In further "bubble zone" news, Jim  Demers, the anti-choicer arrested for protesting inside the bubble zone at the same  clinic in December 1996 was found guilty.  Sentencing will take place on February 10,  at which time Crown Counsel intends to  ask for one to two years probation, plus an  order to stay away from Everywoman's  and the Elizabeth Bagshaw Women's Clinic.  [Information from Pro-Choice Press,  Winter 97-98]  Domestic violence increases in ice storm  Since the ice storm in Ontario and Quebec began in January 4, cases of domestic  violence have "soared" in Montreal. During the storm, many women were trapped  in their homes during the extensive power  outages and became even easier targets for  their abusive male partners.  Montreal police confirmed there were  about 60 "serious" cases a week in Montreal (and many more men plead guilty, pay  a fine, and thus are not included in the statistics). The precise number of violence  against women cases during the ice storm  will not be known for another month until  the accused, who have mostly been released on their own recognisance, are remanded in court.  The situation for women was also  made worse as many shelters were closed  for lack of power and some crisis lines were  disrupted. SOS Violence Conjugale, a hot  line for victims of domestic violence was  closed for two days-the first time their  phones lines have been off in a decade.  Usually, the organization gets more than  500 calls a week.  Ironically, the incidence of other crimes  was down considerably during the ice  storm, with robberies, break-ins and car  thefts down more than half in most juris  dictions. Much of this was due to the huge  police presence out on the streets...and the  extremely cold weather.  The increase in violence against  women during the ice storm is not unique  to Montreal, according to a new study examining the impact of disasters on incidents of violence against women. Elaine  Enarson surveyed 77 shelters, transition  houses, and provincial and state disaster  response units across Canada and the  United States by telephone and mail.  In her study, titled "Response to Domestic Violence and Disaster: Guidelines  for Women's Services and Disaster Practitioners," Enarson looked at the impact and  responses concerning domestic violence  during a number of disasters, including the  Red River Flood in Manitoba and the hurricanes in Southeastern US.  The study was prepared for the BC  Institute on Family Violence (recently renamed the "BC Institute Against Domestic Violence") and FREDA, the Feminist  Research Education Development and  Action Centre in Vancouver.  For a copy of the study, contact FREDA,  SFU Harbour Centre, 515 W. Hastings St,  Vancouver, BC, V6B 5K3; tel: (604) 291-5197;  fax: (604) 291-5189.  Lesbian suicides spark  call for action  Concerns have been raised about the  lack of counselling and support services  for homosexuals in Hong Kong after statistics were released that one in five lesbians is suicidal.  During a forum organized by lesbian  and gay students at the University of Hong  Kong, Dr. Chou Wah-shan said that eight  of 40 lesbians he had been studying for  three years had taken their own lives.  Chou, a lecturer in the University's  sociology department, suggested that lesbians might have high suicidal tendencies  because they have only a small circle of  friends they can turn to in times of difficulty. Most lesbians also feel rejected by  their families and are consequently very  hesitant to approach them for help or advise.  Chou urged the government to provide counselling services for homosexuals,  adding that the government should invest  more in educating people to accept lesbians. One member of the University's Queer  Cultural Group also suggested the government provide support services such as refuge centres for homosexuals who are  kicked out of their family homes.  At present, Queer Sisters is the only  group providing counselling for lesbians  in Hong Kong: a hot line run entirely by  volunteers.  [Information from Women's News Digest, Nov 97, No. 43]  Workfare judged  a failure in Nova Scotia  Surprise, surprise: workfare doesn't  work!  A recent evaluation revealed that the  two-year Compass program in Nova Scotia  which cost $12.5 million in attempt to get  1,609 people off welfare and into the  workforce had almost no positive long-  term effect.  The report done by Coopers and  Lybrand Consulting last August stated  "the program had no discernable impact on  individuals' beliefs about the likelihood of  maintaining steady employment or being  on social assistance in the long term."  No surprise. Wages under the program  ranged between $5.15 and $7.50 an hour for  single parents and former fishery workers.  The review also found that employers  reneged on their requirement to provide  longer terms jobs in exchange for a wage  subsidy. The deal was that businesses would  get a wage subsidy to hire someone through  the workfare program on the condition that  the jobs remained after the subsidy ended.  However, more than half the companies reneged on their promise, saying they had no  money or positions available.  While initial results suggested the Nova  Scotia program would pay for itself if extended to six years. After examining the fate  of participants, the report's authors say the  program would likely never recoup the government investment.  Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and British Columbia have similar  workfare programs.  Mammograms pushed  on women in BC  The provincial government in British  Columbia has allowed the BC Cancer  Agency access to the names of 200,000 BC  women from confidential health records so  it can mail letters to the women urging them  to have mammograms. The mail-out campaign raises concerns not only about violating the privacy of women, but also about  the over-reliance of health agencies on technological responses to breast cancer.  The women mailed the information  were chosen because they were over 50 and  had never had mammograms before. The  Cancer Agency says the first batch of letters  were sent out in January, and more will continue to be sent out over the next six months.  The estimated cost of the mail-out is  $100,000.  While mammograms can be effective  at detecting cancerous lumps, and are recommended at least every two years for  women over 50, they are not perfect. Cancers missed by the screening process need  to be caught by other methods-methods  such as self-exams which are not only free,  but can be carried out in the privacy of a  woman's home.  Dr. Iovo Olivotto, medical leader of the  provincial Screening Mammography Program, said he has already heard complaints  from several women-some over the use of  their personal health information and others who object to being told what to do with  their health.  While Olivotto suggests one reason for  the selection of the 50-74 age group is that  large numbers of post-menopausal women  believe their breast cancer risk is reduced  when it actually increases, he fails to mention that monthly self-exams are equally, if  not more, effective, and are also more timely  in making detections. Many feminist health  advocates also say that mammograms increase the risk of breast cancer.  Instead of pushing mammograms on  women, perhaps the government should  spend the $100,000 on encouraging women  to take initiative with their own health and  perform monthly breast self-examinations.  FEBRUARY 1998 Feature  Women in China and globalization:  Priorities differ among us  by Wang Xia Jiang as told  Agnes Huang   Wang Xia Jiang is a feminist and a professor of English language literature at the  Beijing Foreign Languages Institute. Among  the courses she teaches is one focusing on the  works of African American writers, including  Toni Morrison, Alice Walker and Maya  Angelou.  Wlxen Wang was in Vancouver for the 2nd  International Women's Conference Against  APEC last November, Kinesis' Agnes Huang  had an opportunity to interview her about the  impact of corporate globalization on China.  Huang is a Chinese feminist activist living in  Vancouver.  Agnes Huang: Can you talk about your  reason for being here at this conference?  Wang Xia Jiang: I thought this would  be a good chance to learn about APEC and  to learn why women are against it. I am  interested in globalization and the adverse  impact it has on Chinese women's lives. I  wanted to get a picture of APEC's impact  on Asian Pacific countries, including  China.  The Chinese government looks at economic development as being the most important issue. While they are beginning to  look at environmental issues and sustainable development, their thinking is that if  the economy becomes strong, we will become a rich country, then everybody in that  country benefits. I think it would be good  if we could see it from another perspective.  In China, we've been talking about  market-oriented, export-oriented agriculture a lot—if you want to get more money  to improve your living standards, then you  have to grow the crops that will bring in  cash.  For instance, I know of two counties  in a poorer province with a tradition of raising pigs. One county has found a niche and  exports pork to Hong Kong. The pig farmers in that county make a lot of money. The  other county only has their home market,  so they don't make such high profits.  In working with poor areas, it is necessary to help the farmers gear themselves  towards market needs so that they can  make more money to improve their lot, to  send kids to school, to have better housing, et cetera. On the other hand, if this goes  to extremes and is taken over by foreign  capital, it will also be very bad for local  farmers.  The question is whether we want to  go along that road or whether there are alternative ways of doing things. We want  to help the very poor farmers to get out of  poverty, but we don't want to follow the  beaten track of countries which are now  suffering the consequences of the World  Bank-imposed Structural Adjustment Programs.  Huang: Socialism is supposed to include the liberation of women. When we  talked previously, you mentioned that since  the mid-80's, when China's Open Door  Policy started [when China opened its  economy to foreign investment and businesses,] the status of women has declined.  Can you go through the history of the situation for women in China since the revolution?  Wang: According to Marxism, women's liberation is theoretically on the agenda  of the Communist Party because they need  women to participate in the revolution.  After the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949, the next step was  societal construction, and they needed  women to participate in that.  The equality of the sexes has been written into the Chinese constitution. Whatever  men can do, women can do-that's the slogan.  Women were encouraged to join the  workforce because joining the workforce  was not only about earning some money, it  was also about participating in the revolution. It was regarded as "politically correct"  for women to leave their kitchens and work  outside as wage earners. It was a question  of whether you wanted to be a revolutionary or remain a "backward" person, staying at home, looking after the family. Therefore, the percentage of women joining the  workforce was very high in China.  Everybody got a job, but in terms of  promotion, there was discrimination. If a  woman is as good as a man, the man gets  promoted. If the woman is better than the  man, maybe then the woman gets promoted. Women had it more difficult than  men because they were the ones most responsible for the housework.  I was 13 when new China was established. Most of my generation has not felt  sexual discrimination, especially as highly  educated intellectuals. We were not judged  as a man or a woman; we were judged [on  the basis of] whether we were a revolutionary or a counter-revolutionary. Girls wearing fancy dresses in the late 50s were criticized, not because they tried to be feminine,  but because they showed bourgeois ideology by putting on Western-looking dresses.  So it was a political issue, not a sexual issue. During the early 80s, there was concern that there weren't enough jobs. After  the Cultural Revolution, all the educated  young people who had been sent to the  countryside came back to the cities. These  people were in their late 20's, early 30's, and  they needed jobs.  So in the newspapers, discussion  started about whether women should go  back to their homes. Of course, most  women were very indignant about it, but  some women did agree. Many women-es-  pecially those doing tedious, hard, physi  cal work-agreed that if their salary could  be added to their husband's or if it would  help their husband's chances of getting promoted, they would rather stay at home.  That kind of thinking is quite popular  among the younger generation. The issue  has became centred around making money  rather than supporting the revolution. We  Wang Xiajiang (left)  with Louise Hara  from the Port  Coquitlam Women's  Centre and Ema  Oropeza of the  Vancouver Status  of Women at the  International Solidarity Dinner  following the 2nd  International Women's Conference  Against APEC.  photo by Fatima Jaffer  discussed it in my class and thought that  maybe it's because of fatigue with politics,  or fatigue with long years of hard work and  seeing their mothers struggling with both  housework and an outside job. Maybe it's  a post-Cultural Revolution fatigue.  Huang: I assume the Open Door Policy  and the globalization of the economy has  affected rural women and urban women in  different ways.  Wang: In rural areas, the major change  is that peasants have become very free to  move around in China, so they can leave  their home regions and seek jobs elsewhere.  Many rural girls go to the cities because  even if the monthly wage from the city people's point of view is low, from the rural  point of view, it's quite a lot.  Many of these rural girls face sexual  harassment and a lot say they are forced to  sleep with their employers. Others have  been tricked or coerced by sex-trade traffickers. That's one side of it. On the other  hand, because they can bring money home  to help their parents build a new house or  get a bicycle or help with the brother's education, many of the girls think working in  the cities is good.  The effect on urban women is different because it's more difficult for them to  find jobs. For women who are already  working in certain factories where they  might get laid off, the issue is to help them  to get retrained, to re-enter the job market  and find jobs.  Before, when factories were state-  owned, all employees worked four hours  a day. Now, one worker might work eight  hours, which means another worker becomes surplus. These are issues especially  facing women who don't have specialized  skills and who are therefore becoming "disposable."  Huang: In terms of the women's movement in China, what are some of the discussions around solutions to these situations?  Wang: We're very practical. For instance, now we talk about job retraining.  Most of the women who get laid off are  entering more traditional female jobs. So  when feminists talk about what kind of job  retraining should be given to women, we  tend to focus on jobs that society thinks are  best for women [to ensure they will be able  to find work.]  However, among grassroots women's  organizations, some of us are aware that  this is widening the gap of inequality. If we  think in terms of why men are getting the  higher paying and better jobs, then, of  course, we realize it's not fair.  It's difficult to find a solution. For instance, in terms of education, we have different spring-back projects to help rural  school drop-out boys and girls, but specifically girls. The trouble is, parents will say:  "We don't have money to buy her pencils  and exercise books." Even if they have  money to buy pencils and books, they will  say: "We need her to help around and look  after the chickens and pigs."  If we say, "We are going to give her  some special training so she will learn a  trade" (like embroidery, sewing, weaving-  -the typical "female" sort of thing). This  might lure the parents into sending the girls  to schools to learn to read and write at the  same time as they are learning practical  skills.  Now here's the dilemma: if girls have  to spend time learning practical skills and  boys don't have to, that means boys get  more time to do their book learning. In  China, if you can get into university, you  are guaranteed a good job; you can move  out of the villages and get a good job in  cities. But girls can never compete with  boys if you start at a very young age to teach  them practical skills. A lot of girls drop out  after primary school, and even when girls  get into junior high school, their academic  work is often worse than boys' because they  spend a lot of time learning practical skills.  Huang: Can we move onto the issue of  globalization...You talked before about economic development being geared towards  accessing some markets, but in a way that  isn't bringing in imperialist control, either  through governments or governmental institutions like the World Bank or capitalist  institutions like multinational corporations.  I was curious how you respond to the comment that "globalization of economies is inevitable." And if it is "inevitable," how does  one ensure that globalization doesn't result  in exploitation and abuses of women, workers, et cetera?  Wang: I think globalization leads to [exploitation.] Even without globalization,  when you have private sector setting up  factories then the majority of the profit goes  into private pockets—that's exploitation. It  could be Chinese people exploiting the  Chinese; or it could be American multimillionaires exploiting the Chinese. As long as  there is a profit factor, exploitation is inevitable.  So what do you do? I really don't know.  Chinese people's living standards have increased tremendously since the opening-up  [of the economy]  see CHINA next page  NOVEMBER 1997 Feature  Teaching Black women's history:  New course at UBC  by Audrey M. Johnson  A course in Black women's history will  be offered for the first time as part of the  Women's Studies Program at the University of British Columbia. The course will  make its debut in the September 1998 and  will be taught by UBC Program Advisor  and Lecturer, Yvonne Brown. Brown has  worked extensively on multi-cultural and  anti-racism issues as well as on curriculum  development.  "Over the last 20 years on campus, I  have noticed changes in the Women's Studies department," Brown says in explaining  what led her to pursue the course. "There  is more openness toward dealing with  marginalized groups, like lesbians, Aboriginal women, SouthAsian women, for example. I just want to make sure that we get  our turn."  The course entitled, "The Presence of  African/Black Women in the Americas," is  intended to bring the knowledge and contributions of Black women from Africa, the  Caribbean, and North and South America  to the complexities of women's studies generally, and to feminist theories in particular. It will include study on all the European linguistic divisions of Black women  whose histories originated in the political  economies of Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish,  French and English expansion and exploitation.  Brown says the course is based on the  premise that the forced migration through  the Middle Passage, the 350 years of en  slavement on plantations during colonialism, and the unfair labour codes during  capitalist formation in the Americas, are at  the roots of the present socio-economic and  psychological conditions for Black women  and their families.  "Black women, in their reproductive  and productive roles have been pivotal in  the evolution of the Americas as we know  them today," says Brown. "But the study  of Black women as a subject of scholarly  inquiry in their own right is not common."  I had the opportunity to talk with  Brown further about the course she will be  instructing and about women's studies  courses in general. We talked about the criticism that women's studies courses give students a great deal of theory, but do not give  a full understanding of the realities and  actual conditions of women's lives.  Here are some of her thoughts:  "The criticism of women's studies programs is not unique; that is a criticism of  universities in general. But I think that  women's studies have exercised the greatest potential and actuality in developing a  critical social consciousness.  "There are any number of reasons for  the gap which exists between consciousness  and action. Some of the reasons might be a  reality which still sees women as powerless and passive and a society which represses the political activity of women.  There may be countless monuments of violence against women, but the cultural  markers which indicate the power and  agency of women are still absent except for  an exceptional few. So for me, it is not surprising that a gap exists between women's  studies knowledge and women's political  actions.  "In the teaching of women's studies, it  is one of the tenants that women should see  the personal as political and thereby be  moved to action. That is easier said than  done because there is an enormous cost to  women both personally and collectively  when they try to challenge sexist, racist and  classist structures.  "Personally, I try, in my teaching, to  deliberately make connections among  theory, psychology and politics. I think  most people know what is meant by theory.  But by psychology, I mean using the theory  to do some self-reflection around identity,  histories and social locations. This self-  knowledge or personal psychology is  meant to calculate effective political action  and to understand their consequences.  "By politics, I mean attempting to understand the multi-faceted and complex  meaning of power and influence and the  acquisition of material resources which can  support effective action. Many women are  frightened by any mention of politics and  effectually evade any overt or public display of political action.  "Part of the racist ideology [that exists]  to this day which validated the forced migration, enslavement and exploitation of  Black women, still would have some people thinking that Black women are inferior,  powerless victims. In fact, the feminist  movement could certainly be informed on  effective political action by studying the  history and lives of Black women on the  continent and the diaspora. They have been  denied by their men, other men and other  women. Their lives as they live them carry  the added burden of having to reinvent  themselves to remind the world that they  are full human beings.  "In terms of women's studies, the classical women's studies texts are as racist as  the masculinist texts which they critique.  A course on Black women really brings rigour to the scholarship on race, class and  sexual orientation, and as such could become essential to any critical women studies program.  "Including courses on Black women as  part of any curriculum could be quite disruptive and subversive to the main feminist texts, so the teaching will not be easy.  The instructor has to be prepared to contend with a double portion of hostility, incredulity, and demonization from both students and faculty. This part of it, I'm not  looking forward to, but I'm preparing myself to incorporate this opposition (if I meet  any) into my teaching toward political consciousness."  Audrey Johnson works at the Vancouver Status of Women.  from CHINA previous page  Take my own income as an example.  Before China's Open Door Policy, my net  income for three months could buy one bicycle. Even though the same kind of bicycle has gone up in price, now with my salary I can buy four bicycles every month.  Before the opening up we were all living on coupons. We had monthly rations  of wheat, rice, meat, eggs, sugar. Now there  are no coupons at all. When you walk into  our supermarkets, it's just like Safeway.  Money is everything. If you can make more  money, you can enjoy more. If you don't  make that much money, you don't enjoy  that much.  Most people's living standard is higher  than before China opened up. However, the  gap between the rich and poor has widened  tremendously, whereas before almost everybody was about the same. The widening  gap has made people unhappy.  Huang: If people in China don't want  to go back to a system of coupons, but they  are also unhappy with this particular system which has created a great income gap  like we have here in NorthAmerica, what  kind of system would work? What's the  vision?  Wang: We think that it would be a Chinese type of socialism. But people will think  that we won't see a lot of socialism because  all the social welfare we had before—free  medical care, very good nursing care for  kids, free education—are all gone.  Now we get nine-year's of so-called  free education. Private sector people do not  NOVEMBER 1997  get free medical care. And while some people do get free medical care, it's very much  restricted. For example, you have to go to  a particular hospital or if your illness has  to be treated by a special hospital, you have  to get a recommendation from the hospital  you belong to, and medication is not free.  This kind of thing is making people  unhappy, but on the other hand nobody  wants to go back to the old system. So what  do we do?  We are trying to find a way to have  economic development, but at the same  time see to it that it doesn't go too far. Now  we are introducing an insurance system. We  are trying to have different projects to help  poor kids go back to school and to help  people from poverty stricken areas elevate  themselves from poverty by engaging in the  kind of economic activities which can improve their lives. How successful it will be  waits to be seen.  Huang: Do you think the success of that  working in China is also dependent on the  success of that working in other countries  in the world? There is some thinking that  for the "revolution" to be successful, it has  to happen everywhere...  Wang: I think because of the globalization of capital, to solve the problem we have  to think global and at the same time we  have to act local. If you hope that globally  other people are going to solve your problems, that's not possible. But on the other  hand, if you think of only your problems  and then try to deal with them, and you  don't see the influence globally, then your  efforts will be thwarted.  I really believe in thinking and  strategizing globally. For instance, in terms  of women's issues, we should come together and then go back and act locally,  knowing that what we are doing is part of  the global strategy. We should see clearly  the adverse effect of APEC on human resource development and the economies of  different countries. If we are going to fight  against something, I think it has to be global because our enemies are global.  China is a little bit different from countries that are much smaller than it. I can see  that smaller countries could be overwhelmed and totally controlled by multinationals. But because China is so big, it's  very difficult for it to be overwhelmed by  foreign capital, especially if we are careful  and if we are aware enough of its adverse  impact. China itself it such a large market  that we don't have to rely on foreign investment as much as other countries.  Maybe that's just large nation chauvinism.  Huang: Much of our energy as a women's movement has been on trying to get  our governments to change oppressive situations and to work on behalf of women. But  more and more, women are clearer that in  order for real change to happen, we will  have to create our own alternatives. Do you  feel the global women's movement is in a  position to promote our economic, social,  political visions?  Wang: Maybe I'm pessimistic because  I don't see us [arriving at a global alternative vision] in the near future. In the past,  people would try out different community  ways of living. I don't foresee that happening on a global scale for a while.  For example, let's talk about organic  farming. In China, food security is still a  problem. Increased production is promoted  as necessary to feed the huge population,  and that has meant the use of chemicals. If  we were to use organic manure without any  herbicides or pesticides, then production is  going to be low. So for a nation that is trying to solve the problem of not having  enough to feed its people, maybe we can't  talk about organic farming until later. If  people go hungry, you just can't talk about  anything else.  Sometimes when I come to these international conferences, I realize there are different priorities between "First World"  feminists and "Third World" feminists. I  think all the issues raised are women's issues, but the priorities for women in different countries are the most urgent questions facing them. Canadian women can't  have the priorities Chinese women have  because they don't live in China, and Chinese women can't have the same priorities  American women have because we have  totally different realities confronting us.  Thanks to Ivy Zhufor translating this interview. Women whose lives and writing make a cfifferen  by Ekua Reese  Zoimab Araadahy  The Mocins  f;dj •!';.'\e<  When Kmesis asked me to compile a list of some of my favourite works by Black  writers, I was very excited—it even prompted me to check out a few of my favourite  women's bookstores to see what was new and what was old and still on the shelves. I  even did a little mini interview with some of the browsing and buying customers.  Dionne Brand's new collection of poetry, Land to Light On is a must! Winner of the  1997 Governor General's literary award for English Language Poetry, it's a book that if  you take up, you won't want to put it down. The language is rich, insightful and weaves  a brilliant tale of the Black experience in the Americas. Published by McLelland and  Stewart.  does your mama know? I really like that title. This is an anthology of Black lesbian  coming out stories edited by Lisa C. Moore. Reading it is like spending Saturday night  with girlfriends. It is funny and serious, with all the other in-between emotions. The  short stories, poems and essays make this a great read, does your mama know? is the first  book out of Moore's own publishing house, Redbone Press, in Decatur, Georgia. Can't  wait for more to come.  For all you sci-fi fans out there (or would be's), here is a great book, just hot off the  press: The Moons of Palmares by Zainab Amadahy. This fast paced adventure novel is  set in the distant future on a faraway world, but it will ring bells for anyone interested in  Third World politics. Amadahy's mixed racial background includes bothAfricanAmerican and Cherokee ancestry. This one is published by Sister Vision Press.  Black Girl Talk is another book I really dig. I gave away quite a few copies to my  younger cousins and girlfriends. A great read for Black women between the ages of 15  and 24. The writing is frank and funny, and is really a celebration of young Black women  writers coming into their own.  I can't leave out Rice by Black American writer Nikky Finney. This poetry book is  just amazing. I hang onto every page, every word. The cover of the book is beautiful and  so is the design.  Tales from the Gardens and Beyond by Hazelle Palmer is a collection of short stories about Caribbean folks living in Montreal in the 1960s. The stories take place in a  working class neighbourhoood, called the Gardens. This is warm, well-written collection  spiced with all the necessary humour. I really enjoyed this read. It was just like the stories  I heard from my parents about the early 60s in Canada. This is another Sister Vision title.  Another one from Sister Vision Press that I have to mention is Remembering G and  other Stories, by Makeda Silvera. This is a classic. Been out for well over nine years, but  is still loved. It seems to be a staple among Caribbean high school students. It too is a  collection of short stories, with captivating vignettes of life in the Caribbean during the  1960s, and a young girls's journey into womanhood.  Sister Outsider, essays and speeches by Audre Lorde is another classic that I still  give as a gift. Audre Lorde often identified herself as a Black lesbian feminist warrior  poet mother. She wrote groundbreaking poems and essays on race and feminism. She  died in 1992 of cancer. This book is like a good bottle of wine, aging gracefully, still full-  bodied and rich. I read this book over and over. It's always close by me, and I give it to  every new friend I meet who is new to feminism. Black women's and lesbian writing at  it's best.  Sisters of the Yam: Black Women and Self-Recovery by  bell hooks. Hooks addresses the inner well-being of Black women.  She tackles isues such as addiction, spirituality, eroticism, grieving. Hooks shares numerous strategies for self-recovery. Published by South End Press.  Press Gang Publishers in Vancouver keeps coming up with  some real fine books. A long time favourite of mine is Her Head  A Village and Other Stories by Makeda Silvera. I enjoyed the  wide range of stories, their unpredictable twists, and the stories  that tell of Black lesbian lives, and Black working class and immigrant lives. It's a book that never sits on my bookshelf for long.  Voices: Canadian Writers of African Descent is edited by  Ayanna Black who lives in Toronto. This collection includes the  short stories of over 15 writers of African descent. These are stories of romantic love, racism, sexual abuse, immigration. This  book captures an evolving Canadian African identity. Published  by Harper Collins.  ■ft '■■■;;^£&£J  If you're interested in a good non-fiction book on Black women's history in Canada, check out We're Rooted Here and They Can't Pull Us  Up, edited by Peggy Bristow, Dionne Brand, Linda Carty, Afua P. Cooper,  Sylvia Hamilton and Adrienne Shad. Wow, all these Black women come  together to pull this great collection of African Canadian history together.  Check it out!  Another all-time classic that should make its way onto everyone's  bookshelf is All the Women are White, All the Blacks are Men, but  Some of Us are Brave: Black Women's Studies. It's edited by Gloria T.  Hull, Patricia Bell Scott and Barbara Smith and published by the Feminist  Press in New York. This book was first published in 1982 and today it is  still relevant and heavyweight with over 20 contributors. Topics range  from Black feminism, racism, creative survival and Black women in education.  During my browse of my favourite local bookstore I saw many books.  Angela Davis is out there with a brand new book, Black Legacies and  Black Feminism. This book celebrates the tradition of Black women blues  singers Gertrude "Ma" Rainey, Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday. What a  find! The book looks great and promises hours of interesting reading. Here  goes the jacket blurb: "through a close and riveting analysis of these artists' performances, words and lives, Davis uncovers the unmistakable assertion and uncompromising celebration of non-middle class, non-heterosexual, social, moral and sexual  values." Go for it, women. Published by Pantheon.  Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison's new novel Paradise is out and on the shelf. It  is her first since she won the international literary award. Paradise follows the lives of  four women who take refuge in a former convent in a small town in Oklahoma. Check  this one out, and be prepared for a long read.  Finally, someone read my mind, and that of hundreds of lesbians and feminists.  Norton Publishers has pulled together The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde. [see  Sister Outsider.]For the first time more that 300 poems from this major and influential  lesbian feminist poet is in one book. This is definitely a book that I will have to splurge  on. My collection needs this. I am a great fan of Lorde.  My Brother, by Antiguan writer Jamaica Kincaid is also fairly new. This, Kincaid's  most recent work, tells the story of her brother who died from AIDS. The story takes  place in Antigua and involves her complex and troubled relationship with her mother  and brothers. I like her prose style and I am curious to see how it works with the  subject of AIDS, and how she pulls together the whole package. (I'm waiting for this  one to come out in paperback.) Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.  There are two new, hot anthologies that greeted me at the bookstore, and they are  published by Canadian presses. Tongues on Fire edited by Rosamund Elwin and  published by Women's Press in Toronto, is a collection of stories and interviews by  Caribbean lesbians. It's one of those books that you've wanted to see in print but  never did, so here it is. It is packed with personal lesbian history, and Caribbean lives. Writers included are Shani Mootoo,  Mary Vazquez, Michelle Cliff, Vashti Persad and lots more.  And then there's Maka: Contemporary Writing by  Queers of African Descent, coming out of Sister Vision Press.  Edited by Debbie Douglas, Courtnay McFarlane, Makeda  Silvera and Douglas Stewart, this collection is wild, erotic,  "radically political, outrageous but never dull." It includes contemporary prose and poetry. It is packed with celebration, resistance, passion, laughter and sex...and more sex! There are  over 40 contributors, both from Canada and the US. One of  the editors says "When you open the pages oiMaka, you will  hear a multiplicity of hyphenated voices as the contributors  come from all parts of Africa and its diaspora." This is a wicked  collection. I'm almost half way through and I'm enjoying and  savouring every piece. Definitely a must.  I hope your Black History Month will include digging into  some of these great books.  Ekua Reese lives in the city but hopes someday to move to the country with her three dogs.  sporic Juks  ^temporary  Writing bj§  Queers o  Desce  ■   Det glas  Courtnay McFarlane :  Makeda Silvera!  ,;. and Douglas Stewarf ., Feature  Women organizing against imperialism in the Philippines:  Reviving the  history of militancy  by Liza Largoza-Maza as told to Lisa  Valencia-Svensson   Liza Largoza-Maza is a graduate of economics and was active in the student movement in the late 1970s during the time of martial law. Since then, she has taught and has  been involved with various organizations. In  1987, she joined GABRIELA, a national coalition of women's organizations in the Philippines and is the secretary general of the organization.  Last November, Largoza-Maza was in  Vancouver for NO! to APEC's People's Conference Against Imperialist Globalization: Continuing the Resistance. There, Lisa Valencia-  Svensson had the opportunity to speak to her  about the organizing work of GABRIELA in  the Philippines and internationally, and the  history of women's activism in the Philippines.  Lisa Valencia-Svensson: Can you begin  by telling us what GABRIELA is?  Liza Largoza-Maza: GABRIELA was  organized in 1984 at the height of the anti-  Marcos dictatorship. GABRIELA has about  200 organizations under its umbrella with  a mass membership of about 20,000  women. About 80 percent of these women  come from the poor sectors of Philippine  society, so these are women workers,  women peasants, urban poor women, indigenous women, students, professionals,  et cetera. GABRIELA is an advocacy organization that is working for nationalism and  democracy, and integrating the question of  the liberation of women within this framework.  Valencia-Svensson: Can you talk more  about this national democratic framework?  Largoza-Maza: We are saying that the  roots of women's oppression in the Philippines are the three problems of the Filipino  people as a whole: imperialism, feudalism  and bureaucratic capitalism. These structures are intensifying women's oppression  and patriarchy in the Philippines. So that  is why the specificity of women's oppression and exploitation in the Philippines is  defined within this social context of a pre-  industrial, agricultural economy. This is  why in our advocacy we prioritize the issues of the basic masses women: the workers and peasants.  Valencia-Svensson: I wonder if you  could tell us a bit more of a context of where  GABRIELA fits in terms of women's organizing in the Philippines. I know the Philippines has a broad spectrum of political organizing, and people not familiar with the  Filipino situation may not know about all  the different splits and the whole range of  political disagreements among women's organizations.  Largoza-Maza: We are a national democratic women's organization and so this  defines the kind of issues and advocacy  GABRIELA undertakes. I think there is a  difference in relation to solutions within the  women's movement. Our solution is not  Liza Largoza-Maza (left) with members of GABRIELA Network-Los  Angeles at the Peoples'Conference Against Imperialist Globalization.  mainly to reform [the system]; our solution  is not merely to change the power relations  between men and women. We do recognize  this as real and a problem for Filipino  women, but the issues women are facing are  not just confined to the contradiction between men and women.  If we really want to change the situation  for women, it is necessary to resolve all the  contradictions in society, specifically the contradiction between the different classes, between workers and imperialist and monopoly capitalists, between the peasants and  the landlords, and so on.  We need resolution of the three problems  I mentioned earlier; they all have to be integrated into the struggle.  How are we going to resolve these problems? It won't be just through changing the  laws, and this is where we differ from other  women's organizations. Some think that because women are marginalized, women just  need to have a voice in all the processes. Of  course women should have a voice—that is  very basic as far as we are concerned—but it  should not end there. If you end there, then  you don't address the real issues, especially  for the basic masses women.  There are many instances where women  could be coopted; they could be "consulted"  but not really have input. Then it's just  "genderizing" a whole system, which is actually not alleviating the hardship or the  problems of the poor women. We are not into  genderizing this world or society. We are for  totally changing it in a militant way.  Valencia-Svensson: What are some of the  key campaigns of GABRIELA? Can you start  with the focus areas of work when it first  started in 1984.  Largoza-Maza: When we first started,  it was in the struggle against the  [Ferdinand] Marcos dictatorship. At the  same time, GABRIELA worked on issues  like the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, US  military bases, and prostitution. Now  GABRIELA is still carrying these issues,  but also the issue of the threat of the return of a new dictatorship with [current  president Fidel] Ramos at the helm.  We're also dealing with economic issues the Philippines is facing now, like the  issue of trade liberalization, privatization  and deregulation, which are impacting  very negatively on poor women. The issue of women workers in relation to  contractualization, casualization, low  wages and job security; the issue of peasants and displacement because of the  rapid and massive land conversions that  is happening.  Land conversion is where agricultural land is converted into industrial and  commercial areas, or where crops are converted. For example, traditionally the land  was planted with crops like rice and corn,  but now it is being replanted with high  value export crops. This is affecting  women farmers very much because they  are involved in the production of rice and  corn, but under the crop conversion policies they are being displaced.  Valencia-Svensson: You talked about  the threat of a return of dictatorship in the  Philippines. How exactly is that being  played out right now?  ■Maza: President Fidel Ramos  is in the last year of his presidency, but there  are moves to change the constitution in order to extend the term limits of the presidency. The elections will be coming in May  and so there is already talk about declaring the May elections as a failure because  of violence coming from the armed forces.  This scenario has the objective of extending Ramos' term. The bureaucracy is  militarized; Ramos has put all the ex-military men in the bureaucracy, so their process of thinking is the same as his. Now, there  is increasing militarization in the countryside in order to push the economic programs of Ramos, like the setting up of regional industrial centres, and the setting up  of mining projects (following the approval  of the Mining Act of 1995).  These so-called development projects  are being pushed in the countryside and  even in the cities and the government has  to use militarization in order to implement  these. That is what is happening in many  areas. Just before the APEC Leaders' Summit last year [in Manila,] many communities were destroyed, and police were used  to forcefully demolish the houses in the  "slum" areas.  It is in the agenda of the government  to come up with a model of a police state  like the one in Singapore. A national ID system, the Bank Secrecy Law and the Antiterrorism Act, have all been on the agenda  of the Ramos government. It has been pushing this agenda in Congress, but of course  he has encountered strong opposition from  human rights groups and people's organizations.  Valencia-Svensson: GABRIELA was  started in 1984. Was there a specific event  that hapened that year that led to the forming of GABRIELA?  Largoza-Maza: If you look at 1984, there  was social turmoil. It was during this time  that many organizations were organized  across different sectors. If you look at the  history of the Philippines under the dictatorship movement, specifically after the  assassination of [anti-Marcos leader]  Benigno Aquino, all kinds of organizations  suddenly sprung up. It is in this context that  GABRIELA was organized.  The women wanted to have a venue  wherein they could have their voices and  show that women are concerned with the  social issues. On October 28,1983, there was  a big all-women rally. More than 10,000  women came together—the very rich and  the very poor were side by side. The issue  there was the fight against the [Marcos]  dictatorship and against fascism.  In 1986 when Corazon Aquino came  to power, many of the elite women who  were with GABRIELA chose to work with  the government. They said the dictatorship  NOVEMBER 1997 Feature  had been toppled, so it was time to rebuild  under this new government with a woman  president. They left GABRIELA.  Of course, it is the basic masses women  who said that nothing has changed for us.  This is how GABRIELA is now defined.  Even with Marcos gone, there are still the  basic problems of women which have not  been solved.  Valencia-Svensson: GABRIELA is part  of the BAYAN coalition, a coalition of 12 or  13 groups working for national democracy.  What sort of support has GABRIELA received from the mixed organizations within  the movement over the years?  Largoza-Maza: We get a lot of support  from BAYAN members, other national  democratic organizations and the public in  general. But, of course, our history and experience is also full of difficulties. Some  male activists question the necessity of organizing a distinct women's organization.  They did not see the reason for organizing  separately when we were already a part of  BAYAN and women workers were part of  theKMU.  We asserted the specificity of issues for  women as a distinct oppression, and,  through discussions and consciousness  raising, activists in other progressive sectors slowly came to understand what we  meant.  Valencia-Svensson: Since GABRIELA  was formed, have you noticed an impact  that has spread wider. Are there more  women coming into the leadership of other  mixed organizations and having a voice  there?  Largoza-Maza: I think it's true that, in  the larger context, compared to perhaps 15  years ago there is now more discussion on  women. The general consciousness about  some women's issues is higher. But I should  also say that generally it is still a macho  culture in the Philippines. There are still  patriarchal practices and values that are  very ingrained in Philippine society and in  the movement.  Valencia-Svensson: I want to ask about  GABRIELA in another context, that of the  international women's movement. I know  that Gabriela has participated in a number  of international conferences over the past  years and certainly women from Canada  have been participating in them as well.  It seems that women from Canada put  so much energy to attending conferences  that there's often not much follow-up. Some  women are now asking what is the point  of participating and whether it's the most  effective way to build the women's movement in Canada and globally. I'm wondering what kind of constructive criticism  members of GABRIELA have in terms of  the direction the international women's  movement has been taking the past several  years?  Largoza-Maza: First of all, I think international solidarity among women is important and that women should be united.  Women all over the globe should build a  strong solidarity based on anti-imperialist  position. Imperialist globalization is impacting very negatively not only on women  in "Third World" countries, but in the "First  World" as well.  I think the basis of unity of the women  across the countries is now very strong. But  then also, the mainstream international  women's movement is still very much  dominated by white western feminists.  They like to impose their analysis on what  the issues are for women or on the definition of feminism; they want to define what  women's advocacy at the international  level should be. These things are unfortunate but understandable because usually  these women's organizations have resources and can launch international campaigns.  I could just tell you our experience in  relation to the women's and human rights  movements. It was GABRIELA which first  used the slogan: "Women's Rights are Human Rights." That was in 1987 and was  done as a recognition of the broad range of  human rights violations committed against  women. There were specific issues from  domestic violence, to state violence, like  rape, sexual molestation and sexual abuse  used as a form of torture by repressive regimes and dictatorships. That's why we  formulated this slogan.  Mainstream feminists were not talking  about women's rights as human rights, and  they weren't recognizing state violence as  violence against women. Of course, domestic violence is a women's rights issue, but  you cannot just focus of this form of violence. You cannot remove the understanding of violence against women from the  larger context of state, economic and political violence and repression.  So those are some of the tensions in  international women's movement. I think  women from the "Third World," women of  colour, Black women should be able to assert and define what they mean by their  own oppression in their own context. We  cannot talk about women's oppression just  in a theoretical way and out of context.  The women's question has its own conflicts and it's women down below who  should define this. I personally notice that  there's a lot of funds in gender programs,  but it is unfortunate that for some women  sis of issues like women's health, trafficking in women, peasant women—we have  the Asian Peasant Women's Network.  Valencia-Svensson: What work has  Gabriela done, if any, around lesbian issues? I know that a large number of female  migrant workers are lesbians, but rarely  does that issue get mentioned.  ..there's a lot of funds in gender programs,  but it is unfortunate that  for some women being involved in  so-called gender projects has become  their career.  being involved in so-called gender projects  has become their career.  Valencia-Svensson: It's about cooptation  and the depoliticization.  Largoza-Maza: Yes, you lose your politics and then your direction becomes so  reformist. You lose your original reason,  which is to bring about change: change in  relationships, change in society, change in  structures.  Valencia-Svensson: Has GABRIELA  ever run a particular international campaign, been a part of a coalition that's been  waging a global campaign?  Largoza-Maza: We have initiated building up an anti-imperialist network all over  the world. We started that with WISAP, the  Women's International Solidarity Affair in  the Philippines. In 1994, we sponsored a  solidarity affair where we invited women  from the grassroots, especially from other  "Third World" countries. We discussed the  commonalities of issues of women in the  our countries. We followed that up with our  activities during the Beijing [4th World  Conference on Women] where we organized workshops tackling issues of women  and globalization. And during NGO activities, we organized an anti-imperialist  march where we were able to generate the  participation of about a 1,000 women.  We're also networking with other organizations in the United States on the ba-  Largoza-Maza: In our organizing  among trade union workers and among  students, we encounter lesbians. There was  a lesbian organizing committee in  GABRIELA, but it was some of the members left for some personal reasons. The  organizing committee is still there and so  we are addressing this issue also.  Valencia-Svensson: Where does  GABRIELA get its name from?  Largoza-Maza: Gabriela is an acronym  for General Assembly Binding Women for  Reforms, Integrity, Equality, Leadership  and Action. It's long, but if you're familiar  with [the Philippines in] 1984, you'd know  we were very fond of acronyms. There is  JAJA, Justice for Aquino, Justice for All, and  all sort of other acronyms.  So what always happens is that we  think of an acronym and then we [spell it  out in words.]  We chose GABRIELA because  "Gabriela" also refers to Gabriela Silang.  She is one of the heroines of the Philippine  revolution against Spanish colonization.  She lived before the Ratipunan...  Valencia-Svensson: The uprising...  Largoza-Maza: Yes, the 1896 revolution.  She led an uprising in the Hocos region. She  was the wife of Diego Silang who was also  one of the leaders of the uprising in that  area. When he died, Gabriela took up the  leadership and led the army.  We wanted to highlight the qualities  of Gabriela in that she had a very strong  anti-colonial character. This also defines the  women's movement in the Philippines.  Women have, since the start, fought side-  by-side with men against colonialism. I  think this also differentiates us from other  women's organization in the Philippines  because they think anti-colonial issues are  not women's issues.  Gabriela is also a woman who got  away from the traditional role of housewife  and mother. Diego Silang was her second  husband. During that time, most women  wouldn't think about a second husband  [laughs.] And, of course, she was a woman  who saw that if conditions call for it, she  would take up arms and join a uprising or  join a revolution.  Valencia-Svensson: I like to think that  she reclaimed the truly traditional role of  women in the Philippines because I have  heard that when the Spanish first arrived,  there were a lot of women who led the resistance.  Largoza-Maza: Yes, before the Spanish  came, women had relative equality and  they were held in high regard by society.  The Babaylans or Kapatalonans were  priestess and healers, and they were the  ones who engaged in literature and passed  down the culture through their stories.  These were the roles played by women.  When the Spaniards came, they arrested and witch-hunted these women and  made them wear yellow in order to pinpoint them. They disallowed the traditional  practices of Babaylans. And it was the male  priests who wanted to dominate religion  but they couldn't do it if the Babaylans were  there. As a result, some of the Babaylans  were pushed into the mountains.  The Babaylans waged a campaign not  to pay taxes to the Spaniards. That is part  of the history of the Philippine women's  struggle. So we are the modern Gabriela,  the new Gabrielas—we carry her tradition  and we look back to our history. We want  to relive the tradition of militancy of  women like Gabriela Silang, and also to  continue the anti-colonial struggle.  Lisa Valencia-Svensson is a Filipina Canadian  lesbian feminist living in Vancouver who too  wonders sometimes about those conferences.  NOVEMBER 1997 Feature   Violence against women in Canada:  Records still not safe  by Robyn Hall  The fight to stop the forced handing  over of complainants' personal records  during sexual assault trials is not over, despite the passage of a federal law designed  to restrict disclosure.  Bill C-46 was passed by Parliament in  May 1997. Applauded and shaped by feminists, the new legislation (Criminal Code  Section 278) explicitly states that its concern  is with violence against women and children. It is intended to prevent people accused of sexual assault from easily getting  access to the complainants' (assault survivors') personal records.  Under the new law, judges cannot allow records to be disclosed simply so the  accused can fish for information about a  woman's past sexual history or reputation,  her reliability or counselling she may have  received, or simply because the records exists.  The impetus behind Bill C-46 was a  series of decisions coming out of the Supreme Court of Canada establishing a  standard of disclosure which were counter  to protecting women's equality rights and  access to justice. The new law was created  following a long consultation process with  women's groups, feminist lawyers, defense  lawyers, among others.  Although it is difficult to determine the  longterm outcome of the disclosure legislation, reports vary with regards to its success so far in reducing the harassment of  women and records producers.  Lee Lakeman, of the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centres, feels that  the passage of the law and the surround  ing political and public will that created it  have in fact reduced the harassment of centres and women using the courts.  At WAVAW (Women Against Violence  Against Women) Rape Crisis Centre in Vancouver though, they have been subpoenaed  several times since May. As Kam Raj relates,  WAVAW continues to hire a lawyer for the  sole purpose of defending their position or  refusal to hand over records about their clients to the courts.  In one case, Raj says the judge was not  aware of the new legislation, but when it  was brought to his attention by the lawyer  for WAVAW he decided that the records did  not meet the test for disclosure. While  WAVAW did not have to hand them over  to the court, the money needed to hire a  lawyer to fight the subpoena had to come  out of the rape crisis centre's operating  budget.  Secondary centres in smaller communities like in Barrie, Ontario, where Anne  Marie Aitkins works, have always been the  hardest hit by subpoenas. Aitkins, who is  also with the Ontario Coalition of Rape  Crisis Centres, says that at the Barrie Rape  Crisis Centre, "there is no slow down in  subpoenas."  But the biggest threat to the survival  of the legislation has been the prioritizing  of the "fair trial" rights of the accused over  the equality rights of women. Since the new  law came into effect, the strategy of defense  lawyers has been to focus on bringing constitutional challenges against the legislation, instead of waiting to see how it will  be used by trial judges.  XfdJBookA  .   J    Wr     Art Emporium  Western Canada's  Lesbian & Gay  Bookstore  Open Daily 10am to 1 lpm  Our Books/Our Issues  Gay Fiction  Lesbian Fiction  Our Magazines & Journals  AIDS/Health  Humour  Erotica  Little Sister's Book & Art Emporium  1238 Davie Street,Vancouver,B.C.,V6E 1N4  (604)669-1753 Phone Orders 1-800-567-1662  Internet Address:  Queer Theory  Feminist Theory  Biographies, Essays, Poetry  Religion & Spirituality  Art & Photography  Community  They have achieved some success. Last  year, two different judges struck down the  new rules of disclosure as unconstitutional.  In R. v. Mills inAlberta and R. v. Lee in  Ontario, the trial judges ruled that the law  violated the accused person's right to a fair  trial and full answer and defense, as guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights  and Freedoms. In both decisions, the judges  decided that not providing the accused access to women's personal records "is distinctly unfair to the accused and puts the  accused into an impossible position."  To bolster their attack on the new rules  of disclosure, many defense lawyers are  using an article called "Bill C-46 Should not  Survive a Constitutional Challenge" by  David Paciocco. Disturbingly, portions of  the article were quoted in the Lee decision.  According to the the two courts' reasoning, the accused has to see the records  to determine if they contain any useful information for his defense. The courts decided that the new legislation creates a barrier that is too high for a fair trial, and therefore is unconstitutional.  Instead, Justice Belzil in Mills suggested that courts go back to using the test  of relevancy established by the SCC in the  case involving Bishop Hubert O'Connor.  That test would let the accused have access  to records in many situations, and was reacted to with anger by women when it  came down in February 1995 [see Kinesis  April 1995.] Ironically of course, Bill C-46  was pressed for as a response to the inadequacy of the O'Connor decision in safeguarding women's equality rights and access to justice in sexual assault trials.  The first part of the Mills decision came  down in the middle of the annual department of justice consultation with women's  groups held last September. Women at the  consultation responded with anger to the  ruling says Lee Lakeman. "The reaction  was, we value this bill. Look, could we protect this one victory."  As well, commented Jennifer Koshan  of West Coast LEAF (Women's Legal Education and Action Fund), "women were  asking why it is only in cases where we are  telling our stories that credibility is challenged like this."  Not all constitutional challenges to the  disclosure legislation have been successful  though. In BC, two such challenges failed,  according to lawyer Gail Dickson, who was  involved in one of the cases. In her experience, the new rules are being used in BC  and are successfully preventing the disclosure of records.  The issue of disclosure of women's  personal records will likely reach the Supreme Court of Canada again. Many  women are not confident, given the composition of the SCC, that the new law will  not be struck down by the highest court in  the land.  The future of the disclosure legislation  also lies partly in the hands of the federal  department of justice. According to Jennifer  Scott of LEAF National, "women were say  ing to the department of justice: 'this is your  legislation, you take responsibility for its  survival'."  The federal Justice Department did act  as an intervenor (or interested party) in the  Mills case in support of the bill. And according to the department's Catherine  Kane, Justice will continue to intervene in  some of the future cases where the defense  brings a constitutional challenge to the bill.  She adds that there are currently dozens of  court challenges to the legislation  underway.  However, feminists point out that there  is currently no funding available through  the Department of Justice for the public  education work necessary to convince  judges and the public of the value of the  legislation. Though the legislation was sent  to the chief justices in each province with a  brief background paper, Kane admits it is  still up to individual judges to educate  themselves about the new law.  As well, there does not appear to be  the political will within the Liberal government to speak out strongly on why restrictions on disclosure are essential in addressing violence against women. Women's  groups and other feminist activists must  continue to lobby the federal government  to protect the legislation.  In the meantime, there are several possible actions for women and women's  groups to take on this issue. At a workshop  in Vancouver on the new legislation last  May, activists, lawyers and counsellors  gathered to discuss the new bill and future  action on the issue.  Among the possible strategies identified were: lobbying to have legal aid cover  the costs associated with resisting subpoenas for records; obtaining funding to monitor the implementation of the disclosure  legislation (Vancouver's Rape Relief and  Women's Shelter did apply but has not received money for this); establishing a system of staff lawyers who will represent  record holders like rape crisis centres and  transition houses; and establishing a 24-  hour phone line to give advice to anyone  who has been served a subpoena and lobby  for extended bill to protect records in other  cases involving women.  The disclosure issue is a good example both of how the court process can  disempower women and also how women  can influence the creation of law. As lawyer Gail Dickson puts it: "the fact that [the  legislation] exists is a real victory; upholding it is a real challenge."  A plain language document explaining the  disclosure legislation (Bill C-46) has been produced by the Feminist Research Education Development and Action (FREDA) Centre for Research on Violence Against Women and Children. For a copy, contact FREDA at 515 W.  Hastings St, Vancouver, BC, V6B 5K3; tel:  (604)291-5197; fax: (604) 291-5189; ore-mail:  Robyn Hall is a regular contributor for Kinesis and works at West Coast LEAF.  FEBRUARY 1998 ARTS  Review ofPersimmon Blackbridge'sProzac Highway;  Living on the  soft-shoulder  by Lesley Ziegler  PROZAC HIGHWAY  by Persimmon Blackbridge  Press Gang Publishers,  Vancouver, BC, 1997  The first scene of Persimmon  Blackbridge's new novel Prozac Highway is  of an impending car crash. The moment is  excruciatingly tense as, in detail by slow-  motion detail, the car and its occupants slip  closer and closer to the edge of the road. At  the same time, the narrator's front-seat-  passenger recognition that she has no control over the outcome of this event, and her  detached weighing of the pros and cons of  smashing through the guard-rail clearly  express the vagaries of life lived on the soft  shoulder.  This in-between quality-where things  are always leaving what they were but are  still on the way to becoming something  else-echoes through Prozac Highway. Jam,  the novel's main character and narrator,  lives her life in a space where not much is  settled and nothing is agreed on. She is a  performance artist who increasingly can't  handle performing publicly. She cleans  other people's houses, part-time. She feels  a keen fondness for other members of the  Internet e-mail listserv to which she subscribes and avoids running into friends on  the street. Her friend Roz, who herself is  living in the space between having already  had treatment for breast cancer and waiting for the results of tests to monitor its return, is Jam's ex-lover and ongoing performance partner.  The novel's structure reinforces the ad  hoc status of Jam's world. First, Jam's narrative slips between past and present and  between a first-person account to her third-  person observation of her own life. As well,  the novel intersperses e-mail notes and conversations with conventional narrative to  develop the story. However, far from working to isolate cyber-chat as some bizarre,  virtual form of communication, or even to  set up cyberspace as an authentic alternate  environment with its own alternate  typeface, Prozac Highway's style hints toward a world where the lines between the  virtual and the real are blurred.  Jam's increasingly frayed internal life  threads through these fluctuating, unpredictable circumstances. Ambivalent about  living, and equally as torn about dying, Jam  struggles to find ways to cope with her  deepening depression. In a moment of searing honesty, she wonders how "knowing  you can check out is the only thing keeping you alive." Jam is along for the ride on  her own emotional crash, left to adapt in  the best way she can.  Many writers would flounder in such  chancy waters, but Blackbridge resists trying to resolve the opposing forces in Jam's  life. More than that, she does not let things  stand in opposition for long. It might be  easy to write Jam's sitting/typing cyber-life  as unreal and her walking/talking "meat-  world" life as real. It might be only slightly  more difficult to reach the conclusion that  any stabilizing reality (even a cyber-reality)  is better than no steadiness at all. But  Blackbridge dares instead to question what  counts as real.  Is it more real, for example, for Jam to  agonize over what to write for her next  performance with Roz than to sweat out an  e-mail message to a lover she's never met  and knows only by the cyber-handle  Fruitbat? Is it more stabilizing for her to listen to her doctor than to the crow that appears at the foot of her bed?  In fact, the novel is at its most hilarious when it explores the limited use of pinning life down to a narrow version of reality. On finding much of her day-to-day conduct listed as "Symptoms of Depression"  in a pamphlet her doctor has given her, Jam  wryly observes that "[i]t's so good to know  what's a Symptom and what's just my regular Fucked-Up Behaviour."  However, these are also the instances  at which Prozac Highway is most harrowing, and Blackbridge makes the pros and  cons of crashing through a guard-rail seem  easy to figure out compared to the profits  and losses of handing oneself over to psychiatric diagnosis and treatment.  Jam is all too familiar with the advice  and recommended therapies modern psychiatry has to offer. To improve Jam's men  tal health, shrinks have steered Jam towards  college, the anti-depressants Elavil and  Prozac, and day therapy offering classes in  Self-Esteem, Assertiveness Training and  Life Skills.  Too bad none of these strategies provide Jam with the relief and comfort that  cutting and thinking about suicide do. Too  bad, as well, that along the way Jam is  taught that psychiatric patients cannot have  insight into their own behaviour, and that  Elavil's stuporous side-effects should be  tolerated to serve the greater good of  healthy brain chemistry.  In its eagerness to settle what people's  lives are about, modern psychiatry is about  as helpful for Jam as black ice on a really  dark highway. Not only does it add a whole  new dimension to Jam's crashing life, it also  steals from Jam her most valuable survival  skills. How, after all, do you weigh the pros  and cons of drug therapy when you've been  told that you lack self-awareness? How do  you keep tabs on yourself when your head  is full of cool, professional voices?  To be clear, Prozac Highway does not  moralize about the evils of anti-depressants  or the hazards of doctor-assisted living. It  does, though, take issue with the power of  the medical-pharmacological industry to  exercise its authority over people from the  outside and the inside. People in Jam's  world get drugged and/or locked up for  not acting "normal," for admitting to waking up early and eating poorly, for social  failure, for not leaving their houses enough,  or for being homeless.  They are also left to wonder, as Jam  does, how to self-reflect without making  themselves into the abnormal subjects of  their own thoughts. "I use the word depression in its slippery sense," Jam e-mails to  Fruitbat, "a description of how I feel, sub-  liminally shaped by drug ads and my new  shrink...If you can keep your head clear of  that shit, you're a miracle."  But the people in Prozac Highway also  survive gloriously. The most touching relationship in the novel exists between Jam  and Fruitbat. As Jam tries to figure out how  to make her emotional ends meet in Vancouver and Fruitbat tries to make the most  of the brief freedom allowed to her on her  outpatient commitment order in Baltimore,  they negotiate how to date, have sex and  love each other in cyberspace. The members of ThisIsCrazy, Jam's e-mail listserv,  have formed themselves into a support  network/activist web /family tangle whose  members argue, advise, and actually care  about one another. Jam has marvellous hallucinations—1990s angels and devils at war  with each other over Jam's life—that come  to lead her into, and out of, trouble.  Prozac Highway doesn't offer any easy  answers to things. It doesn't reach any conclusions about how best to survive in dire  circumstances. Instead, it lives and breathes  in the spaces between the questions and the  answers. Blackbridge is a gifted writer who  is at her strongest when showing the deep  humour and despair of those moments between the highway and the guard-rail.  Lesley Ziegler lives, looks for work and plays  Doom II in Vancouver. She is currently trying  to decide what to be when she grows up.  FEBRUARY 1998 Arts  The annual Women in View festival of performing arts:  A decade of talent  by Leanne Johnson  It is an interesting and often gratifying  process to follow the growth of an organization like Women in View (View), Vancouver's annual festival of women in the performing arts. You watch them in their youth  as they try out new things (some of it works  and some doesn't). You see them learn and  grow from their mistakes and successes  until suddenly, they arrive at their 10th anniversary.  I suppose if anniversaries are to have  a function besides marking time, they  Urban Tatoo is a multi-layered  performance work by Marie  Clements, which weaves the  dreams/memories of a Metis woman's journey back into her childhood days. Clements' previous  plays include Age of Iron and The  Unnatural and Accidental Women.  At the Vancouver East Cultural  Centre, February 26 and March 1.  photo courtesy of the View  My Mother's Last Dance is  Honour Ford-Smith's poem  in performance- the story  of three generations of  women and a daughter's  witnessing of her mother's  death. Published by Sister  Vision Press, My Mother's  Last Dance charts a double  death: of the mother and of  the Caribbean colonial  legacy. Catch Ford-Smith  February 28 and March 1 at  the Vancouver East Cultural  Centre.  Cover painting and design by  Stephanie Martin  should at least serve as an opportunity for  the festival and its audience members to  reflect and review what has gone on since  the View's beginnings and where it's going.  View was founded in 1986 by five  women artists—Sue Astley, Sharon Bakker,  Jane Heyman, Patricia Ludwick and Suzie  Payne—who wanted to encourage women  in the performing arts. The first View festival—and also the first multidisciplinary  women's festival in Canada—took to the  stage in 1989 with 140 artists, including  Margo Kane, Lina de Guevara, and Audrey  Thomas.  Alongside View's own growth and  development, Vancouver women have become more active in theatre. According to  Laine Slater, View's publicist, their statistics show that in 1991/2 only nine percent  of all plays produced in Vancouver were  written by women and 20 percent were directed by them. In contrast, in 1996/7 20  percent of plays produced in Vancouver  were written by women and 37 percent directed by them. An improvement for sure,  but there's still far to go...  Over the past decade, the talents of  more than 1,500 women playwrights, poets, performers, dancers, comedians, and  so on, have been showcased at View festi-  For Slater, one of the most noticeable  changes has been an unprecedented increase in the quality of the work produced  and presented by View She believes this is  the result of the greater opportunities for  women to improve their skills and access  the performing arts.  Slater points to the premiere presentation of Kathleen Oliver's Swollen Tongues  as one example of how View has works to  promote emerging women artists. A former  staff member of View, Oliver first read her  work in View's 1996 festival, and then went  From Toronto writer,  musician and  theatre worker  sheila james comes  A Canadian  Monsoon, a play  which traces the  journey of the Raju-  Isaac family  through clashing  values and dilemmas of choice and  obligation.  At the Shrinking  Violet, Marchi.  photo courtesy the View  on to win Theatre BC's 1997 National  Playwriting Competition.  After glancing over this year's highlights list, I couldn't help but notice that  many of the performers are well-known in  Vancouver performing circles. I had to ask  if View was still committed to promoting  emerging artists, apart from producing  Oliver's play.  Slater pointed to the Incubation Project,  which is View's ongoing program of new  play development. If you are interested in  watching a project grow, you may want to  make a point catching these Play Readings.  Watch for them at various venues around  the Drive as they run the length of the festival.  To help celebrate 10 years of the festival, View alumni will be performing at the  WISE Hall on March 1. The event will be  hosted by Jan Derbyshire and include performances by Jackie Crossland, Nora  Randall, Mother of Pearl, Mercedes Baines,  Cory Philley, Margo Kane, Joy Coghill, and  PatArmstrong.  Women in View starts February 20th and  runs to March 1st. For a full program of the  festival, call 257-1650.  Leanne Johnson is a Vancouver based writer  and a former Women In View staffer.  Swollen Tongues, by Kathleen Oliver, is a romantic fable written entirely  in rhymed verse.The pre-festival promo says it is a comedy a la Cyrano  de Bergerac with a gender bending twist. Performed by Suzie Payne and  Laara Sadiq [pictured] among others.  At the Vancouver East Cultural Centre, February 19 to 28.  FEBRUARY 1998 Bulletin Board  read    this*     INVOLVEMENT INVOLVEMENT  Bulletin Board listings have a  maximum of 50 words. Groups,  organizations and individuals eligible  for free space in the Bulletin Board  must be, or have, non-profit  objectives.  Other free notices will be items of  general public interest and will  appear at the discretion of Kinesis.  Classifieds are $8 (+$0.56 GST) for  the first 50 words or portion thereof,  $4 (+$0.28 GST) for each additional  25 words or portion thereof and must  be prepaid.  Deadline for ali submissions is  the 18th of the month preceding  publication. Note: Kinesis is  published ten times a year. Jul/Aug  and Dec/Jan are double issues.  All submissions should include a  contact name and telephone number  for any clarification that may be  required.  Listings will not be accepted over the  telephone.  Kinesis encourages readers to  research the goods and services  advertised in Bulletin Board. Kinesis  cannot guarantee the accuracy of the  information provided or the safety  and effectiveness of the services and  products listed.  Send submissions to Bulletin Board,  Kinesis, #309-877 E. Hastings Street,  Vancouver, BC, V6A 3Y1, or fax: (604)  255-5511. For more information call  (604) 255-5499.  WANNA GET INVOLVED?  With Kinesis? We want to get involved with  you too. Help plan our next issue. All  women interested in what goes into  Kinesis—whether it's news, features or  arts-are invited to one of our next Story  Meetings: Tues Feb 3 and Tues Mar 3 at 7  pm at our office, 309-877 E. Hastings St.  For more information or if you can't make  the meeting, but still want to find out about  contributing to Kinesis, give Agnes a call at  (604) 255-5499. New and experienced  writers welcome. Childcare and travel  subsidies available.  CALLING ALL VOLUNTEERS  Are you interested in finding out how  Kinesis is put together? Well...just drop by  during our next production dates and help  us design and lay out Canada's national  feminist newspaper. Production for the  March 1998 IWD issue is from Feb 17-24.  No experience is necessary. Training and  support will be provided. If this notice  intrigues you, call us at (604) 255-5499.  Childcare and travel subsidies available.  •A woman-owned and operated business specializing in defensive driver training. ■  Driver Improvement and Retraining  Become a confident and safe driver with an experienced instructor.  Friday  February 13  Waldorf Hotel  Tahitian Room  7 pm-2 am  Pledge forms are available from  Vancouver Women's Fund member  groups. For more information and pledge  forms, call 688-4378, extension 2530.  Women competitors only, individual  or in teams. Men's support is welcome  at the event. Admission by donation  for non-competitors.  All proceeds go to the Vancouver  Women's Fund, a collaborative effort  of community-based, feminist  organizations in Vancouver.  WOMEN  IN  PRINT  BOOKS & OTHER MEDIA  Discounlsfor  book clubs  5566 West 4th Avenue  +  Vancouver BC  Special orders  Voice   604 752-4128  welcome  Fax       604 732-1129  10-6 Daily •   12-5 Sunday  Carol Weaver  Graphic Design & Illustration  • fine shirt design  (604) 939-0776  Sub  cribe  SUBSCRIBE TO HERIZOHSJO:  ^fnd out how fem.msts in Canada  are making the world ,"  a better place.  > Get involved in the  new debates.  > Read about important legal cases atiect  ■mR women.  > Relax with news,  satire and reviews.  > Receive absolutely i  Sad your cheque today to.  MB CANADA R3C2G1  OR SAVE $B  2 yea* for fust I  EVENTS  VSW WANTS YOU!  Want to get more involved but not sure  where to begin? Join us—become a  volunteer at Vancouver Status of Women.  VSW volunteers plan events, lead groups,  raise funds, answer the phone lines,  organize the library, help connect women  with the community resources they need,  and get involved in other exciting jobs! Call  us at 255-6554 or drop by our office, 309-  877 E. Hastings St. Childcare and travel  subsidies available.  POPULAR EDUCATION PROGRAM  VSW is holding a popular education  program "Gaining my Voice, Taking our  Strength" starting in March (eight sessions). Issues include health, economics,  violence, homophobia, class and racism.  Among our goals: identifying skills, enhancing self-esteem, recognizing our common  struggles and taking collective action.  Preference to women living on a limited  income. Childcare and transportation  subsidies available. Space limited. For  more info call Ema at 255-6554.  DANCE-A-THON  The Vancouver Women's Fund is holding a  Dance-a-thon! Fri Feb 13 at the Waldorf,  1489 E. Hastings St. The Vancouver  Women's Fund is a group of 14 feminist,  community based Vancouver women's  organizations. Members of the VWF work  collectively on joint fundraising projects.  Proceeds are distributed equally among  member groups. For a pledge sheet, to  volunteer or for more info call 688-9378,  ext. 2530.   KATHY ACKER BENEFIT  A benefit in honour of Kathy Acker will be  held on Sat Feb 21, 8pm at The Kootenay  School of Writing, 112 West. Hastings.  Readings by Deanna Fergusson, Dorothy  Trujillo Lusk, Judy Radul, Lisa Robertson,  Sharon Thesen & Kate Van Dusen, with a  video interview of Kathy Acker. Admission  $3/5 proceeds going to the B.C. Breast  Cancer Foundation.  KAREN TULCHINSKY  Press Gang Publishers will be launching  Karen Tushinsky's new novel Love Ruins  Everything, on Fri Feb 13 at 8pm. The  event takes place at The Lotus, 455 Abbott  St, Vancouver. Free admission, refreshments. Everyone welcome. For more info  call 876-7787.   DYKEWORDS  Dykewords, an evening of readings by local  writers, will be held at The Lotus, 455  Abbott St. on the first and third Thursdays  at 9pm. On Feb 5 Erin Graham, Laurel  Albina and Tamalyn McKean will be  featured. And on Feb 19 Rebeka  Tabobondung, Abigail Kinch and Karin Title  will read with guest host Maike Engelrecht.  Admission is $1-4. Everyone welcome. For  more info call 685-7777.  IN MEMORY'S KITCHEN  A talk by Cara de Silva, editor of the  cookbook and collective memoir In Memory's Kitchen: A Legacy from the Women of  Terezin.will take place on Sun Feb 15 at  7:30pm at the Norman Rothstein Theatre,  950 W. 41st, Vancouver. A collective  memior in the form of a cookbook, the  manuscript was produced by women in the  Czechoslovakian concentration camp  known as Terezin. A special reception will  follow at the Holocaust Education Centre.  Admission $15/members and $18/non-  members. Call 264-0499 for more info.  BONNIE SHERR KLEIN  Bonnie Sherr Klein will read from Slow  Dance on Tues Feb 10 at 7:30pm at  Women In Print, 3566 W 4th Ave, Vancouver. Slow Dance, now available in paperback, is a story of stroke, love and disability written in collaboration with Persimmon  Blackbridge. A remarkable and inspirational book that interweaves Bonnie Klein's  story with reports from her family, friends,  healthcare-givers and therapists. For more  info call 732-4128.  l_Jo 40U draw like the dickens <  j—|ave 40U got tnat graphic  bent?  \_)t maijbe ijou already nave  graphics 40U think would  look great in fCjnesis.  Use UjOur talents to illustrate  for Kjnesis. C_,ome to trie storu,  meeting:  |ues -|—eb 3 or   |ues rlarcn 3.  OH Agnes at 255-54QQ  FEBRUARY 1998 Bulletin Board  EVENTS  1  EVENTS  1  GROUPS  1  GROUPS  SANDRA SEMCHUK  Sandra Semchuk's 25-year survey exhibition, How Far Back is Home..., is running at  the Presentation House Gallery through to  Sun Mar 1. The gallery is located at 333  Chesterfield Ave, North Vancouver. For  more info call 986-1351.   FAMOUS EMPTY SKY  In The Garden of Love, new mixed media  work by Famous Empty Sky that plays with  the parameters of love, collage, and the  nude is at the Vancouver East Cultural  Centre, 1895 Venables St. Show runs until  Marl. For more info call 251-1363.   YOUNG WOMEN AND SCIENCE  Young women considering careers in  science and technology are invited to  attend a networking event at Science World  on Tues Feb 10 at 6pm. The highlight of  the evening is the chance to meet women  who work in science and technology who  are willing to act as mentors to women just  beginning their career paths. Refreshments  and a movie will follow. The event is put on  by the Society for Canadian Women in  Science and Technology. Pre-registration is  required by calling 895-5814. Fee is $10.  ELLEN MCILWAINE  Ellen Mcllwaine, acclaimed as one of the  most amazing slide guitarists ever, returns  to perform in Vancouver on Sat Feb 7.  Event held at the Wise Hall, 1882 Adanac  St. Doors open at 7:30pm show starts at  8:30pm. Advance tickets are $12 available  at Urban Empire (Commercial Dr.), Black  Swan Records, (W. Broadway) and Little  Sisters (Davie) or $15 at the door. For more  info call 253-7189.  STITCHING FOR SOCIAL CHANGE  Stitching for Social Change workshop will  be held on Sun Mar 15 from 10am until  5pm at the Roundhouse Community  Centre. Participants will have an opportunity to listen to each others stories and  create fabrics pieces learning how to  translate ideas and politics into art. Instructor Elizabeth Shefrin, is a feminist artist,  quilter and banner maker who has been  researching and practising political  stitchery for years. Cost is $35. Phone 713-  1800 for more info.  FIERCE FERI  The Fierce Feri Outdoor Ritual will be held  on Sun Feb 15. Celebrate the full moon  and the seasons; with your wild self.  Everyone welcome, rain, shine or snow.  Gather at 5:45pm, ritual at 6. For more info  call Rhiannon at 224-7385.  HOUSE OF MIRRORS  The kick off event of the community art  project, House of Mirrors, will be held on  Thurs Feb 5, 7pm at the Rounhouse  Community Centre, 181 Roundhouse  Mews. The House of Mirrors is a metaphor  for the illusions and distortions projected  into the psyches of women and girls  through the media, diet, fashion, and  cosmetic surgery industries. Over the next  six months, using the mirror as the canvas,  artists and women and girls from diverse  communities will explore how these issues  impact our lives as women. To participate  in this project come to kick off event. For  more info call 739-2070.  LEZZIE BOWLARAMA  Send the Womyn Warriors to Amsterdam!  Come out for Lezzie Bowlarama Sat Feb  28 from 7-11pm at Grandview Lanes, 2195  Commercial Dr. The event is a fundraiser  for the Warriors, one of the teams in the  Mabel League, a lesbian softball league in  Vancouver. Enter in teams of six or as  individuals. Trophies, door prizes, 50/50  draw. Cash bar available. Advanced tickets  only: bowlers $15; non-bowlers by donation. For tickets and more info call Maggie  or Trish at 255-6506.  LAURAWEELAYLAQ  Laura Wee Lay Laq's at the Mercy of will  be exhibited at the Grunt gallery, 116-350  E. 2nd St, Vancouver from Feb 10-28. This  performance and installation by the Salish  ceramist is based on the historical forced  burning of religious artifacts as a sign of  First Nations conversion to Christianity.  Opening Tues Feb 10 at 8pm. For more  info call 875-9516.        1001 BLACK INVENTIONS  Celebrate Black History Month with 1001  Black Inventions Fri Feb 6 at 7pm at the  Michael J. Fox Theatre, 7373 MacPherson  Ave, Burnaby. 1001 Black Inventions is a  play that peeks into the amazing lives of  women and men whose genius touches all  of us—a world where all the inventions by  Africans/Blacks appear into the realization  that Black ingenuity is an integral part of  our daily lives. Admission is $15; $12  children under 16. For reservations call  895-5779.   IWD IN SURREY  "Celebration for Women," the 4th Annual  International Women's Day event in Surrey,  BC will be held on Sat Mar 7 from noon-  3pm at the Surrey Conference Centre, Rm  2, 9260-140th St. Guest speakers from the  Philippine Women Centre and the Garment  Workers' Union. Please reserve as soon as  possible with Anna at the CUPE office,  576-2873. For more info call 581-9381 or  evenings 584-3642, 594-8022, 597-4358.  GROOVEFEST  The 2nd annual Groovefest, anti-fashion  show and silent art auction in Victoria will  be held on Sat Feb 14 at 9pm. The event  will take place at Vertigo on the campus of  the University of Victoria and features  Taylor Mayd, Linda Raino's Big Dance and  Selective Collective. Tickets are $5 advance and $6 at the door. Proceeds benefit  The Women of Our People Native Women's  Sexual Assault Centre, UVSS Women's  Centre, LGBA and The Emily. Phone (250)  721-8353 for more info.  CREATING DEMOCRACY  Creating Democracy...Opposing Corporate  Rule will be held at the Carnegie Centre,  Main and Hastings on Sat Feb 7 from  10am-5pm.This event is open to members  of the East Vancouver community. Tentative  workshops include: What the Hell is MAI?,  Police Brutality in the Latin American  Community, Alternative Health Options, An  Update from Chiapas, Mexico. Everyone is  welcome. Childcare is available and food  will be served. Wheelchair accessible.  Sponsored by the Vancouver International  of Hope. For more info call 251-9914.  A Beautiful Place  5 acres of forested foot paths with  ponds, ocean and mountain views.  Healthy Breakfasts  Hot Tub & Sauna  immm  mwmm  1207 Beddis Road, Salt Spring Island, BC V8K 2C8  CONTACT POINT  This ongoing brown-bag Sunday drop-in  support group for women who love women  of all ages, colours and creeds is presently  on hiatus. Due to full-time creative commitments, founder Rhodea Omler can no  longer "anchor" this group and welcomes  enquiries from women interested in doing  so. Responsibility, integrity and commitment are musts, with spiritual and feeling  goo-ood rewards guaranteed. Call Rhodea  at 228-9051.   SAKHEE GROUP  The South Asian Women's Centre (SAWC)  and MOSAIC in Vancouver invite all  Punjabi, Hindi and Urdu speaking women  to the Sakhee Group Gathering Tues Feb  3, 1-3pm at SAWC, 8163 Main St. This is  an opportunity for women to connect with  other women, share and exchange  commonalities and experiences; and also  bring their children. There will be lots of  topics for discussion, please bring ideas.  Childminding on site. Light refreshments  served. For more info call Perminder at  254-9626 or Sonia or Gitanjali at 325-6637.  PWN BOARD  The Positive Women's Network in Vancouver is looking for new board members to  serve a two year term beginning June  1998. PWN supports women living with  HIV/AIDS to make their own choices by  providing safe access to services and  resources. For more info call Margreth  Tolson at 681-2122, local 229 or Diana  Peabody at 875-3782.  LESBIANS OVER 30 SOCIAL  The Over 30's Social Group meets every  2nd Saturday at 5:30pm for a potluck at  the Vancouver Lesbian Connection (VLC),  876 Commercial Dr. For more info call 254-  8458.   LESBIAN COMING OUT GROUP  Lesbian Coming Out Group will start in the  new year at the Vancouver Lesbian  Connection (VLC), 876 Commercial Dr. To  sign up for the 10 week facilitated group  call 254-8458.   LESBIANS OF COLOUR  Hey Lesbians of Colour wanna talk of  being lesbians, needing and creating  community, separating from males,  unlearning male opppressiveness etc.  while we cook, dance, colour, act up and  create other things together. Contact Dee  Mehta, 7-3458 Main St. Vancouver, BC,  V5V 3N2.   WAVAW TRAINING  WAVAW (Women Against Violence Against  Women) Rape Crisis Centre is seeking  volunteers to do rape crisis work. Are you  pro-woman? Do you want to end violence  against women? Do you want to be part of  the anti-rape movement? WAVAW's next  volunteer training begins in February on  Wednesdays, 7-10pm and Sundays,  11am-5pm. Extensive training in counselling and crisis intervention, advocacy and  liaison work, and medical, police and legal  procedures for rape crisis work. For more  info call 255-6228; TTY 254-6268.  Dahl findlay Connors & Evans  BARRISTERS & SOLICITORS   ^|  • A full range of services to meet your business and  personal legal needs  • Free initial consultation  • Lawyers experienced in protecting the interests and  advancing the rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and  transgendered communities  Suite 620, 1033 Davie (near Burrard), Vancouver, B.C.  (604) 687-8752 • Toll Free 1 888 4 GAY LAW  FEBRUARY 1998 Bulletin Board  GROUPS  IWD ORGANIZING  The next meetings of the International  Women's Day Committee in Vancouver will  be Wed Feb 11 at 7:00pm at the Family  Centre in the Britannia Public Library, 1661  Napier St. Women are welcome to join in  the planning for the March 1998 events. For  further info call Claire at 708-0447.   RADICAL WOMEN  Radical Women and Freedom Socialists  are hosting a five-week study group on  "Gay Resistance: the Hidden History." The  education series will look at the roots of the  taboo against homosexuality and explore  the interconnections between the rise of  discrimination against homosexuals and  the fall in the status of women. Sessions  begin Wed Feb 25, 7-8:30pm t the Rebel  Centre, 2278 E. 24th Ave, Vancouver. For  more info call 874-9041.   FIREMOON  Firemoon: Asia-Pacific Wimmin's Alliance  welcomes all women of mixed, partial or  full Asian and/or Pacific Islander heritage in  the Lower Mainland to discussion groups,  potlucks, rallies and more. For more info or  to suggest discussion topics call Naomi at  473-9575 or email  SEXUAL ASSAULT SUPPORT  A 10 week support group will be starting in  February in Surrey. The group will be a  supportive, confidential place to talk about  feelings and explore issues which arise  from assault such as fear, anger, trust and  sexuality. Group is free. Childcare and  transportation subsidies are available. For  more info call Surrey Women's Centre at  589-8373.   SHAKTI-STRENGTH  Shakti "strength" is a self-help group for  South Asian Indo-Canadian Women who  have experienced the psychiatric system.  The group meets every 1st and 3rd  Tuesdays of the month from 7-9pm at  South Vancouver Neighbourhood House  6470 Victoria Dr. Admission is free. For  more info call Helen (in English) at 733-  5570 or Jito (in Punjabi) 590-8212.  RAPE RELIEF  Vancouver Rape Relief and Woman's  Shelter needs women who are interested  in volunteering for their 24-hour crisis line  and transition house for women and  children. Training sessions are on Tuesday  evenings. For more info and for a training  interview call (604) 872-8212.   COMPULSIVE EATING SUPPORT  A drop-in support group for women struggling with compulsive eating will be held on  the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month.  Group meets from 7:30-9pm at the Eating  Disorder Resource Centre of BC, St. Paul's  Hospital, 2nd floor, Room 2C-213, 1081  Burrard St, Vancouver. Cost is free.  Facilitators are Colleen and Cynthia  Johnston. For more info call 631-5313.  SUBMISSIONS  COMPLEXLY CARIBBEAN  Seeking short stories for an anthology on  female Caribbean Identities into the 21st  century - who are we now? Looking for  fiction which deals with the experiences of  being complexly Caribbean from Caribbean (broadly defined) women inside and  outside the region. Especially interested in  experimental writing and writing which  breaks new ground and the mold of  nostalgic first generation migrant experience fiction. Send submissions to: Complexly Caribbean, Sister Vision Press, P.O.  Box 217, Stn. E, Toronto, Ont. Canada,  M6H 4E2. Deadline is Sep 1998.   VIOLENCE AGAINSTWOMEN  FREDA (the Feminist Research Education  Development and Action Centre) in  Vancouver is analyzing policies in British  Columbia affecting women in or leaving  abusive relationships. The project will  include an annotated bibliography of all  research dealing with violence against  women in BC, and a critical analysis of BC-  based policies. FREDA is seeking input,  particularly unpublished research reports,  needs assessments and curriculum  materials. Contact FREDA at SFU Harbour  Centre, 515 W. Hastings St, Vancouver, BC,  V6B 5K3; tel: (604) 291-5197; fax: (604)  291-5189; e-mail:  WOMEN ANDTHE MILLENNIUM  Papers are invited for submission to be  included in Women and the Millennium,  edited by Somer Brodribb. This collection of  essays will explore, within the frameworks  of women's lives, some of the questions  feminists are considering at the turn of the  millennium. Topics could include: feminist  activism in change; welfare, homelessness  and poverty; economic restructuring and  migration; girls' organizing and popular  culture; Native women and land claims;  and future lesbians. To submit a proposal,  send an abstract (two copies, 250 words)  and a short bio. Extended deadline is Feb  28. Papers from proposals accepted will be  due May 15. Send proposals to Somer  Brodribb, Department of Women's Studies,  PO Box 3045, University of Victoria,  Victoria, BC, V8W 3P4; tel: (250) 472-4277;  fax: (250) 721-7210; email:  brodribb @  SPIRITUALITY ANTHOLOGY  Calling all writers, story-tellers & oracles,  sherece taffe & Sister Vision Black Women  and Women of Colour Press been waitin' to  hear your views, opinions, stories, anecdotes, critiques and whatever else ya got  about all Religions/spiritual/ritualistic and  ceremonial denominations. All Black and  Brown ("of colour") dykes, lesbians, bi/  sexual, gay wimmin and queer gals, send  yo stuff now to sherece taffe at Recovering  c/o Sister Vision Black Women and Women  of Colour Press, PO Box 217 Stn E,  Toronto, ON, M6H 4E2. Deadline is May 1.  It's that time again!  International Women's Day  is just around the corner.  Show your support and  advertise in Kinesis.  Call 436-3825  Deadline to book space is   February 16.   *$& sou© is m  A  WOMEN AT CLAYOQUOT  The premiere film screening of Fury for the Sound: The Woi  Clayoquot will be held on Friday March 6 at the VogueTheai  ver at 8pm.The film focusses on how ordinary women cami  awareness at Clayoquot on Vancouver Island (during the pr  clearcut logging). Shelley Wine, the director/producer/writei  that women were the primary spokespersons at Clayoquot  two-thirds of all arrestees and that women are 80 percent o  lVar  CO  polit  ca  s int  rig  com  pr  number of international awards.'  Duthie's Books, Banyen Sound, V  lore information call 255-9363.  CLASSIFIEDS  WOMEN'S SELF-DEFENSE  Women Educating in Self-defense Training  (WEST) teaches Wenlido. In Basic classes,  you learn how to make the most of mental,  physical and verbal skills to get away from  assault situations. Continuing training  builds on basic techniques to improve  physical and mental strength. By women,  for women. For info, call 876-6390.  FRASER RIVER PLACE COOP  Fraser River Place Co-op is accepting  applications for 1-3 bedroom units. No  subsidies, shares are $1600. Housing  costs are $667-977. Participation required.  S.A.S.E. 530 Ginger Dr, New Westminster  BC, V3L 5K8.  CLASSIFIEDS  LYDIA KWA  Lydia Kwa, Ph.D, clinical pychologist in  private practice, works with clients dealing  with a wide range of issues. Central  downtown Vancouver location. For appoint-  ments, call (604) 682-5818.   BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY  Good teaching skills will earn you unlimited  income and time to enjoy it. Your own  business with less than $500 investment. I  am looking for people who are looking for a  legitimate business opportunity, therefore I  am offering no hype/no push information.  Call Carol (604) 929-0776.  PROUDLY ANNOUNCING  the Opening of  DR. PENNY THOMPSON'S  DENTAL PRACTICE  Dentistry in the Heart of the Community  Phone:251-1322 Fax:251-1232  Call Us ... Be a Special Patient  Or drop by at 1 - 1701 Grant Street (at Commercial Drive), Vancouver  Advertisement paid by Dr. Penny J. Thompson, Inc.  FEBRUARY 1998 LIB1Z8 4/98  LIBRARY PROCESSING CTR - SERIfiLS  £20b EAST MflLL, U.B.C.  V6T 1Z8  Ode to You Who Needs to Knew What Gives  Soon it will be March 8,  how magnificent and greath!  Oh, wonderful IWD,  How we ADORE thee.  But what's the day without a gift?  Why, it \s a bra without its lift.  It \s a sieve without its sift.  It is a rhyme that leaves me miffed!  What to give, what to GET,  Never fear, I'll tell you yet.  The gift to give to hear that "Yusss!"  Is a subscription to K\r\es\s\  To get or give it's the best there is,  Much like soda with its fizz,  Or ar\ A+ on a pop quiz.  So hurry Miss, or Mrs., or Ms.,  Give that sub to K\r\es\s\  —poem by Sur, for sure...  One year  D$20 + $1.40 GST  Two years  D$36 + $2.52 GST  Institutions/Groups  D$45 +$3.15 GST  D Cheque enclosed  D Bill me  □ New  □ Renewal  □ Gift  □ Donation  For individuals who can't afford the full  for Kinesis subscription, send what you  Free to women prisoners.  Orders outside Canada add $8.  Vancouver Status of Women Member;  (includes Kinesis subscription)  □$30+$1.40 GST  Name  Country  Telephone  Postal code  Fax  #309-877 E. Hastings St., Vancouver, BC V6A 3Y1


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