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February 24, 2020

IWD event to celebrate women in justice and public safety

2020 International Women’s Day event at JIBC’s New Westminster campus March 6

International Women's Day logo


Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC) will be celebrating International Women’s Day (IWD) on Friday, March 6 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. with its third annual forum highlighting women’s accomplishments in social justice and public safety at its New Westminster campus.

This year’s IWD theme at JIBC is Our Time, Our Journey (#OurTimeOurJourney), a reminder that women’s stories and voices need to be shared and heard. International Women’s Day on March 8 is a global day celebrating the achievements of women. It also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity, recognizing that it is not only a fundamental right but is also critical to a healthy, thriving society.

“Women are presently underrepresented in many justice and public safety professions, and JIBC is committed to raising awareness and encouraging women to explore opportunities in these fields,” said Charlene Jordan-Jones, Director of JIBC’s Fire & Safety Division, and co-chair of the IWD event.

“Today we celebrate the achievements, contributions and passion of all women in justice and public safety – the trailblazers. However, we recognize there is still more to be done to support women to pursue these careers.”

The keynote speaker this year will be spoken word artist Meredith Graham. She will speak about her experience growing up in government care and living with mental illness, and her work facilitating mental health and spoken-word workshops, as well as advocating for systemic change, especially in British Columbia’s child welfare and mental health systems, and educational institutions.

Graham serves as a youth advisor with the Ministry of Children and Family Development and as a youth worker. She is the recipient of Coast Mental Health’s 2016 Courage to Come Back Award in the Social Adversity category.

The day will begin with a welcome by Cree elder and navy veteran Joy Dockrey (Grandma Joy), followed by a presentation by Chief Judge Melissa Gillespie of the British Columbia Provincial Court.

Inspiring speakers for the event will include:

  • Heidi Cave, who spent a year recovering from burns after a horrific car crash and has since become an author, mother and motivational speaker
  • Lynda Montis, a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, motivational speaker and entrepreneur who will share her personal weight-loss journey
  • Mariah Charleson, a member of the Hesquiaht First Nation who will share the strengths and resiliency of the women she is descended from
  • Vancouver Police Department Inspector Colleen Yee, who created the VPD’s Women’s Personal Safety Workshop, the first of its kind in North America, which resulted in many coming forward to report abuse and harassment. A recipient of the 2019 YWCA Women of Distinction Award, Yee also created a certified self-defence training program for Vancouver female police officers to enhance their skills, knowledge and confidence. 

The IWD JIBC event is open to the public and will take place in the theatre of the JIBC campus at 715 McBride Boulevard, New Westminster. Cost is $40 per person. For more information and to register visit: JIBC International Women's Day Event


About Justice Institute of British Columbia 

Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC) is Canada’s leading public safety educator with a mission to develop dynamic justice and public safety professionals through its exceptional applied education, training and research. JIBC offers internationally recognized education that leads to certificates, diplomas, bachelor’s degrees and graduate certificates; exceptional continuing education for work and career-related learning and development; and customized contract training to government agencies and private organizations worldwide. Our education provides professionals with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to excel at every stage of their career contributing to safer communities and a more just society.

Tags: 2020, International Women's Day

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Last updated March 9, 2020