Editor's Note

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Recent tragedies in Haiti and other countries have brought disasters to the front pages of the news, and we bring our focus to it our first article of the Spring/Summer issue of Network. Through the work of Elaine Enarson and the Women and Health Care Reform working group, we look at why it is essential to consider sex and gender when we think about emergency preparedness and recovery, touching on both the particular vulnerabilities and strengths of women in disaster situations.

Two recent public awareness campaigns that aim to get women and girls thinking about their own health make the pages of this issue.

In Got a cervix? Get a Pap Canadian Women’s Health Network (CWHN) Director of Knowledge Exchange Jane Shulman discusses a new campaign pushing the importance of a Pap tests if you are lesbian, bisexual or trans. She speaks with members of the Queer Women`s Health Initiative about their work on the ``Check it Out`` campaign to help spread the word and combat common misconceptions among both queer communities and health providers.

The National Eating Disorders Information Centre is also catching the attention of girls and women with its campaign on body image and the media. In Casting Light, we look at how women`s self-image can be affected by hyper-thin ideals of beauty, and how the in-your-face campaign is targeting both the consumers and creators of the images and pushing for a more diverse and healthy standard.

Alcohol use and abuse among young women is examined in work from the British Columbia Centre of Excellence for Women`s Health. Trends, specific health risks and consequences for young women, influences and prevention strategies found through a literature review are all addressed.

Also from the Centres of Excellence, this issue features highlights from the new publication Rising to the Challenge: Sex- and gender-based analysis for health planning, policy and research in Canada. Jennifer Bernier, one of the book`s four editors, discusses the importance of integrating sex- and gender-based analysis into all work on health, and how this book and its accompanying workshops provide a framework to make that possible. Executive Director of the CWHN Madeline Boscoe is among the contributors, writing on sex and gender in systematic reviews.

This issue also marks the end of Madeline Boscoe`s time as the Executive Director of the CWHN. One of the founding members, she has been the organization’s leader for fifteen years, tirelessly promoting women`s health and working to make sex- and gender-sensitive programs and policies a reality. Madeline continues to be a true leader of the women`s health movement and will be missed by everyone at the CWHN as she moves on to new challenges. In honour of Madeline, the CWHN has created the Madeline Boscoe Visionary Fund, to help ensure that her work continues for years to come. To find out more about the Madeline Boscoe Visionary Fund, please visit our website at www.cwhn.ca

 

Sincerely,

Signy Gerrard

Director of Communications