By Reaching Critical Will, March 30, 2021
A diverse group of more than 40 feminist representatives from academia and civil society published an open letter on 29 March calling on the Canadian Task Force on Women in the Economy to demand the Trudeau government halt its arms exports to Saudi Arabia and increase humanitarian assistance to Yemen. Signatories to the letter view stopping the arms deal “as part of an internationalist, intersectional feminist recovery to the COVID-19 pandemic.” It further outlines that “Such direct support of militarism and oppression is fundamentally incompatible with feminism. Militarism accelerates, facilitates, and exacerbates armed conflict and attacks on human rights, and undermines multilateralism and international law.” The letter was signed by over 40 academics, activists, and civil society leaders.
WILPF additionally stresses that a feminist COVID-19 recovery will require the reduction of military spending in Canada. Rather than increasing investments in the ministry of “defence,”, such as the $19 billion being spent on military fighter jets, that money should be redirected toward prevention of harm to all people, focusing on investments in education, housing, health, human rights, refugees, migrants, and asylum seekers, environmental protection and preservation, and decolonisation.