Received a call from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities yesterday giving me a heads up about this weekend’s workshop that will help women who are wanting to run for office in this October’s municipal election.

From the press release they sent me:

While women make up over 52 per cent of the Canadian population, only 25 per cent of the country’s elected municipal representatives are female. Canada ranks 42nd out of 189 countries for the number of women in politics.

The workshop is one in a series that FCM is offering in municipalities across the country with funding from Status of Women Canada (SWC). The workshops provide instruction, networking, and mentorship opportunities to women interested in running for municipal office. Women who already serve on municipal councils are involved in the workshops wherever possible, and provide a mentorship role.

Currently, out of 10 councillors, only two are women — one shy of the United Nation’s target of having a minimum of 30 per cent female participation in government. However, we have a pretty good slate of female candidates who’ve declared already. For the mayor’s spot, there’s Liz Brass and Marian Donnelly. In Ward 1, there’s Barbara Young. In Ward 2, there’s Heather McIntyre (and incumbent Jocelyn Hutchinson, if she chooses to run again). In Ward 3, there’s Susan Birley and Shirley Dixon. In Ward 4, there’s Tina Beaudry-Mellor. In Ward 6, there’s Sarah Etter. In Ward 7, we have incumbent Sharron Bryce (who hasn’t, as far as I know, announced if she will be running again). In Ward 9, there’s Nicole Sarauer and Dawn Thomas. That’s nine declared candidates out of 27 which comes to 33.3 per cent. Not bad.

For more information on the Women in Local Government program, go to the FCM’s website.

The Regina workshop will be held July 28 and 29 from 9am to 4pm in the Darlene Hincks committee room in city hall. The registration fee is $30 and as far as I can tell you can still sign up at the FCM website.