She Should Run: An Interview with Laura Ross.

AuthorSenechal-Becker, Elena

She Should Run is a campaign schools initiative organized by the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Canada Region. The campaign aims to launch non-partisan "campaign schools" where women can come to learn about the processes of running for public office. These campaign schools, which usually take the form of short conferences, follow the CWP's framework; they consist of various sessions and modules created specifically to support women entering the political sphere. The Canadian Parliamentary Review spoke with Laura Ross, Chair of the CWP Canada Region, to find out more about She Should Run.

Canadian Parliamentary Review: What is the main objective of the She Should Run campaign and how will you go about reaching those objectives?

Laura Ross: Our objective is to have more women seeking public office. Whether that be federally or provincially, territorially, on city councils, municipalities, school boards, anything like that, we need to have more women involved in public office, because at this point our number of female representatives is very low.

And how do we do that? By educating women and by encouraging women. CWP is a non-partisan organization and we've got members from all parties. We want to ensure that partisan politics doesn't muddy the waters. Our vision for She Should Run and CWP are totally aligned; it's a non-partisan non-profit promoting leadership and encouraging women from all walks of life to run for public office. But in order to do that, we have to educate them and encourage them. That's where the campaign schools initiative came forward. We're putting forward an introduction, an information session, where women can come to find out what She Should Run is all about, and then, from there on, we are going to be running a campaign school.

CPR: Can you tell us a bit more about the organizations that are listed and detailed in the She Should Run pamphlet? What is the relation between these organizations and the campaign?

LR: The beginning part of the pamphlet is like a literature review. It's resource material, so that women and organizations can say: "What are other people doing? What are other organizations doing within Canada, within North America, to encourage more women to seek public office?" It addresses the campaign school framework, it...

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