Michelle Chubb is a 22-year old TikTok creator and activist. She is a member of Bunibonibee Cree Nation in Manitoba. Michelle uses her platform of over 300,000 followers to educate people about traditional Cree culture and raise awareness about the racism and trauma that Indigenous people face. She also raises awareness of national issues such as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
Michelle is using her platform to uplift and inspire other Indigenous youth and to shed light on issues that are often overlooked. She aspires to become a model and continues to be a mentor for younger Indigenous people.
June Joplin is a pastor from Mississauga who spoke her truth and came out as transgender during a virtual sermon in June of 2020. Having grown up in North Carolina, she never received the support that she needed as a young person struggling with her identity and hoped to use her position as pastor to provide affirmation to other people who were struggling between their faith and their identity.
She lost her job after a congregational vote but continues to share her message through weekly virtual sermons and as a guest preacher. Before coming out publicly, June used her weekly sermons to speak out against inequality and in support of social justice and human rights movements. She continues to fight for equality and inspires others to do the same.
Sané Dube is the community policy manager for the University Health Network. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, she worked to bring awareness to the fact that Black communities across Canada are facing two health crises: COVID-19 and anti-Black racism. Thanks to her push for anti-Black racism to be declared a public health crisis, the Toronto Board of Health made it official in June of 2020.
After seeing data from the U.S. and the U.K. that Black people were being disproportionately affected by COVID-19, she advocated strongly for race-based data collection in Toronto and brought attention to the importance of considering social determinants of health when creating public health measures and policies.
In October 2020, Annamie Paul became the first Black Canadian and the first Jewish woman to be elected leader of a major federal party in Canada. The new Green Party leader is a Princeton-educated lawyer, activist and advocate who has worked on the frontlines of the climate movement at the International Criminal Court. Her campaign platform included a strategy to help Canada fight climate change, a plan to defund the police, and a plan to address wealth inequality.
Annamie founded the Canadian Centre for Political Leadership which is a non-partisan charity that trains women and people from under-represented minorities to run for elected office. She advocates for diversity, equality, and fights to make sure local communities are a priority.
Annamie was named as one of Toronto’s most inspiring women of 2020.
Dr. Theresa Tam
Theresa Tam is Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer and an expert in infectious disease, global health security, immunization and emergency preparedness. She has worked in public health for over 20 years and has worked to enhance immunization programs, strengthen biosecurity and strengthen health emergency management.
During her work with the COVID-19 pandemic, she used her platform to call for structural change across health, social, and economic sectors. She also worked tirelessly to ensure Canadians had access to information about COVID-19 case numbers, symptoms, and how to prevent the spread. She continues to fight against misinformation and researches the impact of the pandemic on people living with disabilities, essential workers, racialized populations and seniors.
International Women’s Day is a day to reflect on and celebrate the achievements of women, reflect on progress and call for change. Celebrate today by reflecting on the strong and inspiring women in your life and educate yourself about gender inequality and the various obstacles that women face around the world. Ask yourself how you can challenge gender bias and inequity in your everyday life and make an effort to support and uplift women.