FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following statement was issued by Nathalie Chiasson, chairperson of the New Brunswick Human Rights Commission, in recognition of International Women’s Day:

Tuesday, March 8 is International Women’s Day. This day was recognized for the first time by the United Nations in 1975. Today, Canada will join the entire world in celebrating the tremendous contribution made by women at the national and international levels. I invite all New Brunswickers to acknowledge the progress that has been made in achieving gender equality and the full participation of women in all aspects of society.

I am pleased that Canada’s theme this year is Women’s Empowerment Leads to Equality because this reminds us that respect for and enforcement of human rights is everybody’s responsibility every day. New Brunswick women who are empowered can work together with family and friends to fight against discrimination, harassment, bullying, and lack of accommodation. We must all work together to overcome these obstacles and promote gender equality.

International Women’s Day is also an opportunity for us to share and learn from the experience, the contribution and the successes of women by recognizing their achievements. I am proud to recognize the achievements of women who work for the commission, and I commend them for their dedication to promoting gender equality and defending the rights of women and girls. They have chosen to give of their time in the community, thus using their talents to serve society, like many other New Brunswick women who participate daily in the life of their community. I encourage you to discover the activities going on in your region to mark International Women’s Day.

I invite all New Brunswickers to celebrate the contribution of women to achieving gender equality and their full participation in our community projects.

Since 1967, the New Brunswick Human Rights Commission has protected and promoted the values associated with human rights, such as respect, appreciation for diversity, and absence of discrimination. The commission will turn 50 in 2017, a year that will be a focal point for expanding recognition of the basic principle that all human beings are equal in dignity and rights.