Bringing GBA+ to Manitoba: Toward an Intersectional Feminist Recovery

Our project is funded by Women and Gender Equality Canada.

The Institute for International Women’s Rights Manitoba (IIWR-MB) is launching a Gender Based Analysis Plus research project, led by Research Coordinator Meagan Malcolm. In 1995, the Government of Canada committed to conduct GBA+ in its future legislation, policies and programs with the purpose of eliminating gender inequality within Canada. We are now taking up that work to begin to understand how we can bring GBA+ to Manitoba as a tool to create a more equitable province

What is GBA+ anyway?

Gender Based Analysis plus (GBA+) is one tool within the broader practice of Gender Budgeting, which enables policy makers to access the resources required to assess how their policies will impact different sections of the population. GBA+ specifically is an analytical process used to determine how women, men and gender-diverse people may experience policies, programs and initiatives. However, despite it’s name, GBA+ doesn’t just consider the policy impacts based on our gender identities. The “+” is in the title because it additionally considers the many intersections of our identities: race, ethnicity, culture, age, disability, religion and other factors.

The Problem

The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the multitude of inequalities experienced by people all over the world and in our own province. Statistics Canada reported more than twice as many women (298,500) as men (127,600) between the ages of 25-54 lost their jobs.

In May 2020, the IIWR-MB along with hundreds of Manitobas published an open letter stating six calls to action for the Manitoba Government to ensure a comprehensive response to COVID-19 was possible in Manitoba. One of these calls to action was for the Manitoban Government to implement a GBA+. However, this call has continues to go unanswered.

The Plan

This project aims to focus primarily on the impacts of gender inequity experienced during the pandemic in order to develop policy tools to address these experiences.

Our primary focus is in researching, educating and advocating for specific advancements of gender budgeting tools at the policy level that would address the gendered and intersectional gaps that have been amplified by the pandemic within legislation and community response. These gaps are still felt by Manitobans today. To do this, we first need to understand the needs of Manitobans through a community survey and inclusive community consultations to hear directly from people with lived experience. Manitobans opinions are instrumental in successfully advocating for implementing GBA+ policy to ensure Manitoba’s recovery is responsive and supportive to the needs of all our communities. Our Research Coordinator will use the findings of this research to identify and advance policy tools, including GBA+, within the Manitoba Legislature through advocacy to MLA’s.

Throughout this process, we will be publishing findings and creating educational resources to enable all Manitobans to engage in advocacy efforts to ensure we have the tools for an inclusive pandemic recovery.

How can you get involved?

To be a part of the upcoming community consultations or learn more about Bringing GBA+ To Manitoba, please email Meagan at

Who is Meagan?

Meagan Malcolm ᒣᑲᐣᒪᓬᑯᒼ (she/they) is proud Anishinaabekwe, and a member of Roseau River Anishinabe First Nation. She was born and raised in Treaty No. 1 Territory (Winnipeg).

Meagan recently graduated with her Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice at the University of Winnipeg. In 2019, Meagan was the first Indigenous woman to be elected President of the University of Winnipeg Students’ Association (UWSA). As a UWSA President, Meagan lobbied the federal government on Parliament Hill on Indigenous access to education and action to climate change, campaigned for the University of Winnipeg Foundation to divest from fossil fuel investments, and established the UWSA Indigenous Advisory Circle. Meagan has also advocated for Indigenous students at a national level as the National Executive for the Canadian Federation of Students Circle of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Students, where she gave a statement in the House of Commons on the ongoing water crisis on First Nations. She will be assisting IIWR-MB on a leading research project on GBA+ Plus in Manitoba.

In her spare time, Meagan loves to travel and to wear stunning Indigenous-made earrings. Meagan’s coffee of choice is an iced caramel macchiato.

Additional Reading

Government of Canada: What is Gender-based Analysis Plus
Office of the Auditor General of Canada: 2009 Spring Reports by the Auditor General of Canada and the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development – Chapter One
JStor: Gender-Based Analysis Plus in Canada: Problems and Possibilities of Integrating Intersectionality
Government of British Columbia: Gender-Based Analysis Plus
Government of British Columbia: Policy Approaches Playbook: Considerations for Policy Development
European Institute for Gender Equality: What is Gender Mainstreaming
Taylor & Francis Online: Organizational perspective to gender mainstreaming in the Finnish state administration
OECD: Gender budgeting
How Bill Morneau may use Sweden’s gender-balanced snow-clearing to adjust Canadian budgets
Labour Force Survey, April 2020 COVID-19 and gender inequality: Why Manitoba needs a feminist pandemic response