Giving women a Seat at the Table

The Seat at the Table program, in partnership with the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce's Women in Niagara Council, is a unique opportunity for women in St. Catharines to gain insight into the political process.

This pilot project has concluded. Thank you to all of the participants and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) for funding this demonstration project. A final report and information about next steps will be shared when available from FCM.

A photo of women of diverse ages and backgrounds

Program Background

Did you know Niagara set a record in 2014?

At the time, during the municipal election, voters elected 34 women to political positions, a record number for the region. While that may be reason to celebrate, it illustrates a problem as well - 34 seats represent just 27 per cent of Niagara's 123 elected municipal officials.

Simply put, the Region, and City, are far from achieving truly equitable gender representation when it comes to local politics. In St. Catharines 25 per cent of city councillors are female.

With a focus on improving gender parity in government the City has set a 30 per cent threshold for female representation in the 2022 municipal election. In 2019 the City signed the Leadership Accord for Gender Diversity, a public commitment to support and promote the standards of diversity, equality and inclusion.

The Seat at the Table program is another step in this ongoing effort to include more diverse voices and achieve equity in the decisions that impact residents of all genders, ages and backgrounds.

This initiative is funded by Women and Gender Equality Canada in partnership with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.



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