FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government will table legislation that will ensure funding and independence for the Voices of New Brunswick Women Consensus-Building Forum.

The New Brunswick Women’s Council Act will provide the forum with enabling legislation to advance its mandate and a legislative framework to safeguard its independence from government, said Premier Brian Gallant, who is also minister responsible for Women’s Equality.

“Advancing the status of women is important for the New Brunswick economy and our social fabric,” said Gallant.

The proposed legislation will be tabled when the legislature resumes sitting on Tuesday, May 17.

The forum was created three years ago and is the only advisory body on women’s issues that is governed without legislation in Canada. The legislation will create the New Brunswick Women’s Council, with a mandate and objectives reflecting those of the forum.

“With this enabling legislation, these dedicated and passionate women will be able to do their work on behalf of New Brunswickers independently and efficiently,” said Gallant.

The provincial government has worked with the forum in drafting the legislation.