THE 1970S

Committees Created through YSWC 

Yukon Women’s Mini-Bus Society                                   1972- 1981

Started as a Transit Committee of the YSWC with the goal of getting a public transit system set up in Whitehorse in 1972 The idea started as a transit committee of the YSWC and the idea was to provide transit system for the many people in Whitehorse who were isolated (especially in the winter) and the people with no or one vehicle. They received a research grant from Company of Young Canadians to study the needs and possible solutions. The Society created a proposal in order to obtain funding for 3, 15 passenger buses. The Society was a women’s project. The total amount of funding needed was $80,000 but the City did not come through, although Transportation Canada gave the Society a grant in 1975. Began with an 18-month pilot project, with four mini-buses, in 1976. The Society operated the bus system for three years before a review committee found that the bus system was extremely effective and recommended that the City set up an Independent Transit Commission to take it over. In 1978, this is what happened and despite that some women continued to stay involved. In 1979, the Society was unionized and became member s of Operating Engineers Local 115C and entered into collective bargaining a year later. In 1981, despite the vocal concerns from the Society (Joyce Hayden) the transit system changed from an independent commission to a City Department. 

YSWC incorporated under societies    Jan 10, 1973

Yukon Child Care Association Created     1973

The Yukon Child Care Association was one of the outcomes of the Daycare Conference (When was the Daycare Conference?). The Yukon Child Care Association was tasked with making recommendations about daycare legislation in the Yukon. In 1974, the Association made an application for a grant to pay off debts resulted in having no funding. 

Yukon Child Care Association        Oct 18-19th, 1975

Sponsoring a workshop to bring everyone in the Yukon that is involved with the daycare issue together for an exchange of ideas. 

Yukon Child Care Action Committee and YSWC         Dec 1976

Child Care being revived by Child Care Action Committee and YSWC. The community is concerned about the lack of support from the government regarding childcare. The action committee will attempt to create awareness of childcare and what is needed, get government support and establish a Minimum Standard of childcare. 

Child Care Action Committee   Nov 13, 1976

Position paper on Child Needs presented to Liberal Policy Convention with recommendations. 

Yukon Child Care Association     March 1977

Annual meeting and workshop. Discussion centered on the proposed Child Care Facility Standards. 

Equal Pay Coalition     1978

The Equal Pay Coalition is a group of representatives from labour, legal and women’s organization whose purpose is to raise the pay of female jobs. 

Committee established to work on brief for Labour Standards hearing     1978

Committee consists of Jill Porter, Maureen Jensen, Diane Siedel, Pat Hunbing and Emily Dryzmala. 

Family Law Committee     1978

The Family Law Committee of the YSWC studying the three Yukon ordinances; the Maintenance Ordinance, the Dependents’ Relief Ordinance and the Married Women’s Property Ordinance. 

Matrimonial Reform Committee of YSWC     1978

Yukon Family Law Reform Committee Created     1978

Children Rights Committee     1978

Applied for a Young Canada Works research grant to gather information regarding legislation in other provinces and assess public opinion as to what changes Yukoners see as necessary. 

YSWC Brief to Senate Pipeline Committee     March 1978

Submitted a written brief requesting funding to research work on the impact on Northern women. 

YSWC Pipeline April 24, 1979

Pat Hunking presented the brief to the Northern Pipeline Agency and Environmental Assessment Review Panel. Awarded with two-month contract to the Vancouver Women’s Research Centre for research on pipeline impact on women and families.  

Pipeline Committee         Fall 1978

Report from Pat Hunking and the proposal will be submitted within next two weeks. Over the summer the YSWC has been preparing a proposal to submit with respect to women and the pipeline. The research was aimed at evaluating the impact of the pipeline on women and identification of opportunities for women and outlining their needs in order for women to both cope with negative impacts and take advantage of the opportunities that it presents. Working with the Women’s Research Centre in Vancouver. 

YSWC and Vancouver Women’s Research Centre     Spring 1979

Hired three local women to research pipeline impact on women and families. 

Events that YSWC created, helped with or attended

Yukon Women Book          Oct 1975

Public Meeting with MLA’s     1975

First was an evening discussion with the three women members of the Yukon Legislative Assembly; Hilda Watson, Minister of Health and Welfare and Rehabilitation, Flo Whyard and Eleanor Millard. Major Topic: Daycare

International Women’s Year Committee/Yukon Teachers Federation     1975

YSWC approached by the International Women’s Year Committee from the Yukon Teachers Federation to act as resource people for a workshop they were planning. The workshop occurred on April 17, 1975. Topics included: sexism in textbooks, possibilities for professional advancement in the Yukon, expectations of girls for the working world and how the schools prepare them. 

National Action Committee (NAC) Conference      March 18-21, 1977

Emily Drzymale attended the Annual Meeting in Ottawa representing the YSWC. 

“Call to Action” by Eleanor Millard (MLA)         Oct 1977

Eleanor was asked to speak at the YSWC in order to gain direction, commitment and urging people to become more political. Coordinator for YSWC at the time was Mary Jo Dawe.

Whitehorse Women’s Transition House Committee Created   1974

The Yukon Indian Women’s Association took action to seek funding for a project that would aid women. In 1976, they appealed to the Whitehorse public for support. Since then a steering committee has been created of 15 women representing about 10 organizations, YSWC being one of those key individuals. Created a brief to present to the Secretary of State, Department of Health and Welfare. Funding would go towards pay for trained staff and full housing expenses for approximately 10 individuals. Hope to open in September 1978. 

Transition House a Reality     1979

The Yukon Indian Women’s Association originated the idea for the home four years ago. The private groups on the committee include the Yukon Stats of Women Council (Diane Seidel), Women’s Centre (Sande Copeland), and Crossroads. Obtained a three-year grant from the Federal Health and Welfare Department which views the Whitehorse home as pilot project for similar inter- agency efforts elsewhere. 

YSWC Lobbying Standards         Nov 1977

The new labour legislation in the Yukon. Bill 6, the proposed Labour Standards Ordinance was introduced into the house but withdrawn for public input. YSWC made 2 different submissions. 

Weekly Column in Whitehorse Star         Jan 1978

The YSWC has a weekly column each Thursday in Whitehorse Star. Each column features women’s issues; subjects such as daycare, sex education in the schools, and planned parenthood. It is called “OptiMSm”.

International Women’s Day March 8, 1978 

YSWC and The OptiMSt interview leaders of the parties for upcoming election 1978


The Yukon Women’s Conferences founded     1974

The Yukon women’s conferences were founded in 1974 when the Women’s Centre provided space in order for women to meet and exchange idea and search together for way to meet their own needs. 

Women and Work Conference          Oct 1974

Organized by Leslie Choy-Hee, Diane Brown and Shannon Hathaway. The conference resulted in the YSWC helping CNTel’s; toll operators, clerical personal, automotive partsmen, tradesmen ad mechanics helpers (55 women and 5 men) in their negotiations for company benefits. Without success. 

Women and Law Conference     1974

Women in Trades: Whitehorse Copper Mine     1978

Yukon Conference on ‘Women, Work and Money’         Sept 21-23, 1979 

The first Minister responsible for the Status of Women was appointed in 1971. Initially established within the Privy Council Office, Status of Women Canada became a departmental agency of the federal government in 1976.


United Nations designated 1975 International Women’s Year 

The Canadian government treated YSWC to full-page advertisements, posters, radio announcements, conferences, festivities and “WHY NOT” buttons. 

The Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada, created in 1967 and given the mandate to "inquire into and report upon the status of women in Canada, and to recommend what steps might be taken by the federal government to ensure for women equal opportunities with men in all aspects of Canadian society" published the groundbreaking Report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada, tabled in Parliament on December 7, 1970.