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SDG 5: Gender Equality

Dark orange icon with graphic of gender symbol and equal sign to represent UNSDG Goal 5: Gender Equality.

At the current rate, it will take about 140 years for women to be represented equally in positions of power

Many of Dalhousie's successes have been because of the efforts of women students, faculty, staff members, and researchers, who have had to overcome barriers along the way. Our work towards gender equality and gender equity at the university, and more broadly, must be intentional and ongoing.


High-impact research

Ask an expert: Barriers to care for transgender and nonbinary people
There are few Canadian studies on the surgical experiences of people who self-identify as transgender and nonbinary. A new paper by researchers, including Dr. Hilary MacCormick and Dr. Les Tyler Johnson of Dalhousie, describes experiences in accessing gender-affirming surgery. Read the Dal News story that outlines participant responses and the stress of negotiating the presurgical process.

Dal Solutions: Researcher tackling violence against women from inside Nova Scotia’s health care system
Community health researcher Dr. Alexa Yakubovich is addressing Nova Scotia’s high rate of violence against women by embedding within IWK Health to work more closely with frontline health professionals. Read the Dal News story about the program, which hopes to prime health care to support victims of intimate partner violence and ultimately to prevent the violence from occurring in the first place.

Building a pathway for a human‑centred response to gender‑based violence
The Restorative Research, Innovation and Education Lab (Restorative Lab) at the Schulich School of Law and the Elizabeth Fry Society of Mainland Nova Scotia are undertaking a trailblazing initiative aimed at strengthening the response to gender-based violence in Nova Scotia. Read the Dal News story about this collaborative work.

Dr. Paola Marcato appointed the CBCF‑Atlantic Region Endowed Chair in Breast Cancer Research
In the next five years, Dr. Marcato hopes to see some of her research applied in clinical settings in the care of patients with breast cancer. Her work on non-coding RNA, which has been shown to play an important role in cancer and other diseases, has significant potential for future clinical translation. Read the story about Dr. Marcato in Faculty of Medicine news.

Strengthening systems responses to violence against women in Canadian provinces
Dr. Yakubovich and team are investigating how organizations that serve women who experience violence adapted during the pandemic. They will evaluate how well these adaptations met the needs of women to provide guidance for supporting women during future public health emergencies.

Disenfranchising Indigenous women: The legacy of coverture in Canada
Cheryl Simon, assistant professor in Aboriginal and Indigenous law, says discussions about the source of Indigenous identity must take place with the full involvement of Indigenous women. Read about this work in The Conversation.

Shining the spotlight. Sparking action.
The vision for the Women in Research Caucus (WiRC) is to build a Dalhousie University research community that listens to, fosters and promotes all women research faculty and trainee members equally.

PhD candidate Martha Paynter on what overturning Roe v. Wade could mean for abortion access
Martha Paynter, a PhD candidate at Dalhousie and registered nurse in the field of reproductive health who published Abortion to Abolition: Reproductive Health and Justice in Canada shares her views on the abortion debate. Read the Dal News Ask An Expert story.

Exceptional student experience

Leadership program helps female‑identifying Computer Science students realize potential
Over the past two years, the Leacross Foundation has gifted more than $200,000 to the Faculty’s WeAreAllCS initiative to increase diversity in computer science through scholarships and programming to support the attraction and progression of female-identifying students. Read the Dal News story about this success.

Providing gender‑affirming care at on‑campus clinics
Several doctors at the Student Health & Wellness Clinic in Halifax are now trained in gender-affirming care. The university is able to offer supportive services including initiating and maintaining gender-affirming hormone therapy, providing letters of readiness for gender-affirming surgery, and post-surgical follow-up right on campus. Read the Dal News story about gender-affirming care.

Women in Engineering aims to overcome the gender gap
The Faculty of Engineering Women in Engineering Society (WIE) facilitates the success of women students by offering a variety of services such as hands-on skills workshops, career development workshops, volunteer opportunities to gain transferable skills, sponsorship to WIE conferences, and professional networking.  

Halifax's only full time gender justice centre
The South House is a student-funded, volunteer-driven resource centre that seeks to address and advocate for anti-oppression issues within a feminist framework.  

Welcoming and supportive child care
The University Children’s Centre is a non-profit organization that believes children of all abilities are entitled to participate in a high quality, affordable early learning and care experience. Read more about balancing kids and courses at Dal.

Civic university with global impact

Dalhousie University providing menopause-inclusive workplace through support group, manager training
The university provides training for managers to support employees going through menopause and ensure they have a voice within the workplace. Its departments are also exploring flexible work schedules, making quiet spaces for employees to recharge and developing strategies to support all employees. Read more about these initiatives in Benefits Canada.

Dalhousie Feminist Seminar Series returns for the 2022/23 academic year
Drawing on a rich history of feminist engagement at Dalhousie University and in post-secondary institutions across the Atlantic region the Dalhousie Feminist Seminar Series brings together faculty and students from across Dalhousie, our colleagues at other institutions in Halifax and elsewhere, and members of the community interested in feminist research and scholarship to present and engage with one another's work in a collegial and supportive environment.

States of Being: Works by contemporary Canadian women selected from the permanent collection
Selected from the Dalhousie Art Gallery permanent collection by Susan Gibson Garvey, the works in the States of Being exhibition suggest a variety of emotional or metaphysical states of being. Ranging widely in style and content, each work suggests overt or subtle conditions of desire and sublimation.

Speak Truth To Power: Sounding the Alarm on Gender-Based Violence
Eliminating gender-based violence is all of our responsibilities! Dalhousie welcomed the community to consider how we can better support each other in this Speak Truth to Power Forum discussing the urgent need to eradicate gender-based violence in all of its forms. Watch the recorded forum on YouTube

Foundation for inclusion and distinction

Talking about menopause in the workplace
Dalhousie's Menopause Support Group meets monthly to help remove the cloak of invisibility and normalize menopause in conversations and workplaces. Read the Dal News story about menopause in the workplace.

Child care
In addition to the on-site University Children's Centre (Halifax), Dalhousie also has a corporate membership with Kids & Company.

Protecting full participation based on gender identity and expression
The Gender Affirmation Policy actively works to help support Dalhousie faculty, staff and students in expressing and affirming their gender identity so all people may fully participate based on their gender identity and expression.

Addressing complaints of discrimination at the university
The Statement on Prohibited Discrimination sets out the university's commitment to safeguarding students and employees against all forms of prohibited discrimination, including sex and gender, in the course of work or study or participation in university-sponsored organizations, activities and programs.

Sexualized Violence is Never Okay
The Sexualized Violence Policy outlines Dalhousie's official process in supporting disclosures and reports of sexualized violence. It's purpose is to prevent sexualized violence, to be educational, and toprovide timely, coordinated, consistent and fair response to disclosures and reports of sexualized violence.

Building a Dalhousie University community for people of all sexual orientations and gender identities
The Queer Faculty & Staff Caucus (QFSC), seeks positive change toward a society in which LGBTQ2S people can participate free of negative stereotypes and as equal members of the Dalhousie University community.