How, in a country which boasts eight consecutive years of budget surpluses have Canadians allowed poverty to persist and grow? Among those most affected are women and children. One in seven (2.4 million) women are now living in poverty; Aboriginal women, lone mothers, senior women, women with disabilities and racialized and immigrant women are disproportionately represented among the poor.
Why have the efforts of groups working towards social justice and the elimination of poverty and social exclusion been slow to create systemic change? Despite the eff orts of many committed Canadians and years of debate and various initiatives by governments, we seem to have made little headway. In fact, poverty has intensifi ed for marginalized groups.
One challenge that feminist and social justice advocates face is that our approaches have not kept pace with the growing complexity of contemporary social, political, economic and cultural conditions.
Based on our work in women’s movements, CRIAW believes that diff erent and diverse approaches are urgently needed in struggles for social and economic justice. Accordingly, in the last two years, CRIAW has begun developing intersectional feminist frameworks (IFFs).
This critical refl ection piece introduces and explores CRIAW’s emerging thinking around the contributions of IFFs to alternative approaches to re-envisioning policy change and advocacy. It aims to facilitate a deeper understanding within women’s and social justice organizations of IFFs, which
can contribute towards a more just world for all citizens.