Support local news and get a FREE mug!

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Today is International Women’s Day, a day to recognize the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women worldwide.

Locally, the Women’s Resources Society put the spotlight on the day by releasing a video to recognize this year’s theme, ‘Pledge for Parity,’ earlier today.

The video features the cast of the Vagina Monologue’s 2016 production.

Outreach Coordinator Phallon Stoutenburg said, for her, the day means a call for gender equality, and it can mean multiple different things.

“I think it’s an important date to recognize how far we’ve come, and how far we still need to go, which kind of ties into the video.” she said.

Heather Sjoblom with the North Peace Museum wrote to School District 60 and urged them to consider naming the city’s newest school after a female historical figure, as all the schools in the district that are named after people are named after men.

Sjoblom said that she feels disappointed when she has tours of school children come to the museum, and only recognize the male historical figures, and not the women.

“Nobody knows about the women,” she said. Sjoblom recommended that Trustees consider the names of Bella Yahey, Margaret Murray, Anne Young, Monica Storrs, and Vi Woodward.

Murray spearheaded the launch of the Alaska Highway News alongside her husband, George.

Storrs contributed to the community by traveling far distances to take care of people, for her work, and also accommodated students so they could attend school in town.

Yahey is the daughter of Great Chief Attachie of the Beaver First Nation, who, in 1900, signed Treaty 8. She passed away at the age of 118 in 1976, and is believed that she was the oldest living Canadian at the time of her death.

Young was the first registered nurse in the North Peace region.

Woodward was also a registered nurse at the Cecil Lake Outpost Hospital — the second hospital in this area, said Sjoblom. When it closed, she came to Fort St. John to work locally. She worked primarily maternity.

According to Sjoblom, the babies she delivered grew up and would visit her — and she reportedly could remember how much each one of them weighed when they were born.

But that’s far from the end of the list. Sjoblom said there are many more women from the history of this region who she feels aren’t talked about enough.

“Even just to get the name out there, so school kids can start making associations,” she said.

Sjoblom added that she would also like to see more public structures named after Aboriginal people, and that she’d like to see Bella Yahey’s name used for that reason. Her husband, Charlie Yahey, is the namesake for Charlie Lake.

Report an error

Read our guiding principles

Thanks for reading!

Our goal is to cover all the local news and events happening in Northeast B.C. If you believe in this coverage, becoming a Supporter is a great way to help!

As a Supporter, you also get our investigative stories early and a FREE mug!

More stories you might like