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Feminist Organizations Joint Appeal for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza

Submitted to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on November 17, 2023, by the Canadian Council of Muslim Women on behalf of a coalition of feminist, gender justice, and human rights organizations

Subject: Feminist Organizations Joint Appeal for Immediate Ceasefire in Gaza

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,

We, the undersigned, a coalition of feminist, gender justice, and human rights organizations, come together to add our collective voice, echoing the concerns of Canadians and advocates worldwide. The escalating death toll in the Palestine and Israel region demands immediate attention and action. We implore the Canadian Government to wield its influence forcefully, demanding an immediate ceasefire in the occupied Gaza Strip and Israel. We call on our government to join the international effort to monitor the ceasefire. The time for decisive action is now. Peace, human rights, and gender equality are imperatives that must inform the Canadian response to these current events, consistent with Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy. The path of militarization leads to heightened violence, especially gender-based violence, and obstructs access to critical resources, including healthcare. Women, children, and LGBTQ+ people are disproportionately vulnerable in times of conflict. As unwavering advocates for human rights and gender equality across diverse communities, we call on Canada to prioritize the well-being of affected communities. It’s time to champion peace, equality, and the safeguarding of human rights.

The call for “pauses” does not adequately address the urgent need to save lives and alleviate the immediate and critical humanitarian crisis unfolding in the region.

Reports of civilian casualties, widespread trauma and injuries, individuals left without adequate medical care, and the dire conditions faced by vulnerable populations, including infants in incubators, children, pregnant women, those about to give birth or immediately post-partum, LGBTQ+ people and disabled people, compel us to appeal for immediate and decisive action to bring about a ceasefire. As the world witnesses the widespread suffering, injuries, and loss of lives among civilians, including thousands of children, it is our responsibility as feminist, gender justice, and human rights organizations to call on you to take a clear and decisive stance.

Furthermore, we request that Canada actively makes every possible effort to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to the affected areas in Gaza and support the safe return of hostages to their families. The urgency of the situation demands swift and decisive action to ensure that medical facilities receive the necessary support to treat the injured and that essential supplies such as food, water, fuel, medical supplies, reach those in need.

Thank you for your attention to this matter. As advocates committed to the principles of gender equality and to the protection of human rights, we earnestly implore our government, which proudly identifies itself as feminist, to align its actions with these professed values. We trust that you will consider this joint appeal with the gravity it deserves.


Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights
AGIR Outaouais
AIDS Coalition of Nova Scotia
Amnesty International Canada English Speaking Section
Avalon Sexual Assault Centre
Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic
Birth Mark
Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity
Canadian Council of Muslim Women
Canadian Women’s Foundation
Cape Breton Centre for Sexual Health
Child Care Now (Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada)
Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice
DisAbled Women’s Network of Canada||Réseau d’action des femmes handicapées du Canada
Ending Violence Association of Canada
Fédération du Québec pour le planning des naissances
FemDev Consulting
Grounded Doula Services
Halifax Sexual Health Centre
Les Femmes Michif Otipemisiwak
National Right to Housing Network
New Brunswick Coalition for Pay Equity
Niagara Reproductive Justice
Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI)
Oxfam Canada
Planned Parenthood NL Sexual Health Centre
Planned Parenthood Regina
Planned Parenthood Toronto
Sexual Assault Services of Saskatchewan
Sexual Health Nova Scotia
South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario
The Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies (CAEFS)
The Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women/ L’Institut canadien de recherches sur les femmes (CRIAW-ICREF)
The Obstetric Justice Project
Women’s Centre for Social Justice (WomenatthecentrE)
Women’s Shelters Canada
YWCA Halifax

CC Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mélanie Joly
Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, Marci Ien

Download a PDF version of the letter.