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Take Action and Adopt a Gender Equity Policy!

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Policy Objective

To use gender-neutral and inclusive language in organizational by-laws, policies and publications. 


  1. Review and update your organization's current by-laws and policies. This should also include administrative forms such as insurance or image waivers, medical forms etc.
  2. Review and update your organization's public facing communication materials
    • ie: promotional brochures, website text, social media language etc.


Some gender-specific language can cause individuals to feel unwelcome, excluded, and can even discourage them from participating in your sport.

Using gender-neutral or inclusive language will ensure all of your members feel included and respected, potentially drawing new members to your organization or club.  


Follow the link below to find more guidelines for gender neutral language!

Policy objective

To be an equal opportunity employer.


  1. Short-list at least one female applicant for interviews in hiring and appointments to committees.
  2. Implement the principle of pay equity.
  3. Ensure awareness of and access to equal opportunities for all staff to participate in professional development & mentorship programs.
  4. Consider opportunities such as flex-time, job sharing, caregiver support.


A study in 2014 revealed gender diversity in the workplace increased businesses productivity. Researchers discovered that shifting from an all-male or all-female office to one split evenly along gender lines could increase revenue by roughly 41 per cent. 

A 2015 study also found women in Canada make, on average, $8,000 less than men for comparable jobs.
Women have the right to receive the same salary, hours, benefits and opportunities as their male counterparts do.

Policy Objective

To achieve a gender balance in the appointment of all committees and the board of directors.


Strive for a minimum gender distribution ratio of 30:60%


Only 27.8 per cent of directors on National Sport Organization boards are female. 

A more diverse board means a greater range of skills, experiences and strategies which creates a greater opportunity for growth.


Download CAAW's guide that demystifies the workings of boards and strives to improve recruitment and retention of women as board members.

policy objective

To provide equitable opportunities to participate in sport and physical activity for both genders.


  1. Evaluate current programs and services to identify:
    • gender-related needs and interests of participants (e.g.,types and frequency of activities),
    • facility and equipment allocation, and
    • program quality and participant satisfaction.
    • Identify barriers to participation and develop strategies to reduce those barriers. Examples may include:

      • removing uniform guidelines that fail to provide reasonable choices for athletes of all genders;
      • training all program leaders/coaches on how to engage and coach athletes of all genders;
      • ensuring a balance of gender in the programs’ service providers, presenters, coaches, officials, etc.; and
      • to consider offering gender-based programs to support those athletes whose participation may be hindered by a mixed gender setting, or who may find gender-segregated environments appealing.
    • Analyze the disbursement of funds and resources on a gender basis and dedicate resources to underrepresented groups.
    • Evaluate the organization’s progress annually, by collecting statistics on:
      • number of programs or opportunities by gender,
      • participation rates in all areas of involvement (athletes, coaches, officials, volunteers, leaders), and
      • retention rates.



    PSOs reported only 40% of their membership as female, though females make up 51% of the population in BC. Ensuring girls and women have equitable opportunities to participate is not only important for society, but also a way to boost your membership and drive more awareness about your sport. 

    The factors that influence women and girls to participate in sport can be different than those of men or boys.

    Policy Objective

    To increase exposure and awareness of gender equity in all aspects of the sport.


    Develop a communications strategy that promotes gender equity, and includes:

    • use of gender inclusive language, visuals and images that are free of stereotypes
    • equal recognition to the successes and achievement of all genders
    • both genders are visible spokespeople for your organization
    • education for your members on best practices


    You now have more equitable opportunities for girls and women in sport so let your community know!

    By advertising your sport as gender equitable, you will drive more interest from female participants, coaches, officials and fans, and help influence change among your members and the greater sport community.


    Use viaSport's communications toolkit to find out how to create a communications action plan!

    Are you ready to advocate?

    Advocate for Gender Equity

    After you've taken action, you're ready to advocate!