Future is Female Roundtable Event

On Wednesday November 14th, QFCE hosted a roundtable discussion centered around the theme “The Future is Female”. The discussion was an open, inclusive, candid environment with a diverse group of Queen’s students who are passionate about female empowerment.

Topics such as inspiring women we look up to, the US midterm elections, the #MeToo movement, women in STEM and international security, consent, and culture at Queen’s were discussed. The Community Outreach team has put together a few of their favourite points made by the roundtable participants.

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On the climate at Queen’s University:

  • A missing narrative/dialogue is that of minority groups. “Jordan Peterson type talks” are a form of erasure when it comes to making these voices heard, and the administrative bodies at Queen’s are not fighting it

  • There is a lack of representation in higher positions

    • There are equity positions in ASUS and the AMS, but there is a lack of knowledge about these positions and a lack of turnout

  • The burden is placed on women and other minority groups to advocate, show up to events, advertise, and raise awareness

  • Recently on Queen’s Overheard, a post was made in which a young women responded to and displayed some of the messages she had received from a male student containing racist slurs. Her post was removed by admins with various reasons cited as the cause. :

    • Was it wrong for the young women’s post to be taken down?

      • Yes, as it creates a precedent when it comes to others who want to come out and publicly share their stories

      • Official resources (other than Facebook) need to be made more aware to students

      • There is a burden placed on victims of racism to remain calm and poised when being attacked, although this responsibility should not always be placed on the victim

  • How to address racism on campus: small scale changes to the culture, such as sensitivity training for non-gender based groups

On the #MeToo movement:

  • Men need to be held accountable, the counter argument that it “paralyzes men” creates a toxic discourse

  • Women thought the Brett Kavanaugh case would be an example of real change

    • How do women trust the system after this?

    • Christine Blasey-Ford was a well-educated, respected, white woman: If she is not believed why would other people be?

  • Need to turn the question of “ruining men's lives” to what about how this has affected the victim’s life?

  • Sexual violence against men needs to be A PART of the discussion, not a counter argument

On life in male-dominated fields:

  • In STEM: At Queen’s there is an increase in undergraduate females in engineering, but this does not translate into the real world

  • There is a need for more female role models

  • In politics: the culture is still a “boys club”, men still tend to listen more actively when another man is speaking

  • This lack of representation leads to competition between women

On representation in the Canadian government:

  • Canada is ranked 50 on the list of countries with women in the legislature

  • Was Trudeau’s gender balanced cabinet really balanced?

    • Many of the roles women were in were labeled lower level cabinet positions

By the Community Outreach team: Kiana Buzza, Maddie Case, Emily Thompson, Miranda Reid, and Emily Quimby

Bunisha SamuelsComment