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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 14, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Herald Family The Lethbridge Herald Fourth Section Lethbridge, Alberta, Saturday, December 14, 1974 Pages 33-40 6A ctivist percentage of Alberta women A bortion Lynne Van Luven A 'dear Dick' letter Women's bureau reflects conservatism i committees Box 777 Stagnant, Alberta By LYNNE VAN LUVEN Herald Family Editor EDMONTON Don't expect the Alberta Women's Bureau to shuck off its conservative duds and fly the flagrant banner of female militancy. It's just not going to happen not in the im- mediate future, anyway. And certainly not as long as Catherine Arthur has anything to say about it. Director of the Alberta Women's Bureau since mid March of 1973, Miss Arthur feels strongly that to interpret the duties of the Alberta Women's Bureau either too liberally or too conservatively would distort the informa- tion giving function of that branch of the public service. The women's bureau, she insists, must accurately reflect and answer the concerns and inqueries of its constituents the women of the province. And Catherine Arthur has no reason to believe that the female segment of the population is particularly radical or liberated. "We're still a small 'c' conservative she reflects. "Ninety per cent of our working women believe in the traditional roles and 50 per cent are still in the home, raising families and keeping house. "If we had the act reflect the opinions of the ma- jority, it wouldn't hold anything for the vocal, aware group. If the legisla- tion were specific enough to please the vocal group, it would offend the conser- vative women." The Alberta Women's Bureau Act, which set up the service in 1966, "lends itself to flexibility" says Miss Arthur been 'Miss' too long to change to 'Ms.' she says.) The women she en- counters at meetings and the requests her office receive for information have convinced her that "the activist percentage of women in Alberta is so small, so insignificant, it would fall off the end of any graph." YAMAHA ORGANS New and Used COLLEGE MALL Phone 328-3694 According to legislation, the duties of the bureau are "to collect and compile in- formation, opinions and other material on matters of particular concern to women, including cultural, social, legal, public and other rights, responsibilities, interests, and privileges of women in Alberta." In addition, the bureau is to "make such information available to women, women's organizations and others." A final catch all clause gives the bureau authorization to "provide such other services and functions as may be designated by the minister." The bureau's publication outlining laws affecting Alberta women is an example of information made available to the public. Helen Hunley, solicitor general, is the minister responsible for the Women's Bureau. The bureau is a "floating responsibility" it is af- filiated with no specific cabinet ministers ac- cording to the discretion of the Lieutenant Governor in Council. Women's bureaus in many other Canadian provinces are affiliated directly with the depart- ment of labor. Miss Arthur finds it advantageous that her office is not so connected; she says operating under the solicitor general's auspices provides her with the flex- ibility to work in co opera- tion with many areas of the provincial government. "Working women often have more resources at their says Miss Arthur. "I sometimes wonder if we're nol overlooking the womer, who stay at home. When 1 Few concrete projects set to celebrate women's year The Alberta Women's bureau has plans aplenty for ways to observe International Women's Year, but no concrete projects are in the offing as yet. Most of the projects envisioned by AWB Director Catherine Arthur involve educational presentations to increase the awareness of Alberta woman. Few of the schemes involve grants to existing women's groups, or great expenditures of money. "There will be some money available for women's year projects, but funding is not always the says Miss Arthur. She said a project operating on a shoestr- ing could someimtes be more effective than a well funded effort, if it involved large numbers of the population, at the grass roots level. Miss Arthur does not hold out much hope for sizeable grants from the federal government, which has set up a special Privy Council secretariat to plan projects for International Women's Year. The United Nations has designated 1975 as IWY to focus attention on the areas of life where equality for women is still largely an unrealized ideal. "We're considered an affluent says the director, "so I don't think we can anticipate great amounts of money for Alberta." One of the projects for 1975 that Miss Arthur seems most certain about is a series of provincial conferences on topics of interest to women, to be held in several locations throughout the province. She described as "exciting" the concept of mini conferences where women from all walks of life would be participants, learn- ing from each other, rather than spec- tators. Early in the new year, she expects the appointment of a co-ordinator of women's programs in the civil service who will be expected to work with female government employees and encourage them to upgrade their attitudes, training and job skills, in order to be more competitive in the careers market. She said a province-wide co-ordinator may also be appointed, to oversee all 1975 special projects for women. Miss Arthur says women should become more involved helping each other in prac- tical, one to one basis, instead of holding additional meetings where talk, rather than action, is the main activity. "Women need to become more involved, working in less sedentary capacities, with individual hands doing things." she says. She spins off a list of possible programs which could result in heightened awareness for women. One of her fondest dreams is the formation of a small task force of well informed women who could visit schools in every major centre in the province to acquaint school girls with the multitude of career choices open to them. "Girls in high school now are not very with says Miss Arthur. "It'll take two more decades at least for women to pull themselves up and start showing con- fidence in their own abilities." She says her bureau is also considering a publication showing women working in un- usual jobs, playing roles other than the typical "female which would be distributed to business firms as well as educational institutions. She said it might also be feasible to bring in guest speakers women skilled or renouned for exper- tise in a certain area who could travel to several centres and speak to a variety of women. speak to groups, housewives tell me they're beginning to feel worthless, they're weaken- ing under the barrage of comments from some women activists, who im- ply women staying at home have nothing to offer. Many women are pleased to hear someone say 'if you're happy at home rais- ing your family, stay Miss Arthur says the Alberta Women's Bureau "doesn't have a big budget. I have very little money to make available in grants. Mostly, I can serve as a resource person for women's groups, put them in contact with other departments. and suggest alternate sources of funds. If the cause is worthy, sometimes we can scare up the money but according to legislation, our function is to disseminate infor- mation, not money." "Actually, it's somewhat discriminatory to even have a women's says Miss Arthur, echoing a sentiment Helen Hunley has occasionally been heard to utter. "After all, there's no men's bureau." A career woman all her life, Miss Arthur worked as an accountant and office manager for a chemical company and as a public relations officer for an air- line before coming to the women's bureau. She says she enjoys her working relationship with Miss Hunley tremendously. "I'm sort of the ideas she says. "If there is something I think we might be attempting, I pass it along to Miss Hunley. She has an 'in' at the cabinet level. It works very well, cuts down on the red tape." In this way the women's bureau recently co operated with the depart- ment of advanced education, appointing Bet- ty Garbutt of Calgary as a consultant in charge of assessing existing post secondary educational op- portunities and related counselling services for women in Alberta. Christmas guide helps cut costs OTTAWA (CP) Drinking hot chocolate or mulled wine with friends and family gath- UPHOLSTERING Prompt Service Reasonable! MODERN and ANTIQUE FURNITURE and AUTOMOBILES 1016 1st Avenue South, Lethbridge PHONE 328-5257 or 327-3037 after 5 p.m. PHOLSTERING ered around a big table to make Christmas decorations beats running around crowded stores buying baubles. So says Pollution Probes's Alternate Christmas Cata- logue, a 16-page tabloid re- leased this week. If you have to rob Mother Nature of a tree, let red ap- ples and strings of berries bob from its branches, the catalogue says. It shows how attractive dec- orations are made by sticking toothpicks into sphere-shaped corks and how bits of paper and foil can become star- shaped ornaments. TCY THE UNIVERSITY of LETHBRIDGE invites nominations for the position of CHANCELLOR All nominations must be submitted on official nomination forms available from: THE SECRETARY TO THE SENATE University of Lethbridge 4401 University Drive Lethbridge, Alberta T1K 3M4 All nominations must be received by JANUARY 15, 1975. Home-made wooden blocks, puppets fashioned from old material, string necklaces of nuts, shells, beads and maca- roni, all make great gifts and the guide shows how it's done. Christmas cards can be re- cycled, the catalogue says. Send them to art teachers who welcome the cards' bright colors and various tex- for paper mo- saics. Or make them into tree decorations. When shopping for children, buy wooden or cloth toys rather than wasteful, petro- leum-based plastic ones. An ant colony, an aquarium and living plants are gifts ev- eryone will enjoy, Pollution Probe says. The organization urges buy- ers to avoid all but essential electrical appliances and sug- gests ways to improve the ef- ficiency of refrigerators, stoves and freezers. The catalogue is available at Ottawa book stores and li- braries free of charge. It is printed on recycled paper. Need more vegetables OTTAWA (CP) Canadian consumption of fresh vegetables has grown far faster than production, says the Consumers Association of Canada. Forty to 50 per cent of the country's needs are im- ported from the United States and consumption there is ex- pected to overtake production by 1985. Canada may need to add acres in vegetable crops in 1975 to meet mounting demands, the CAC says. NOW YOU ARE FINISHED SCHOOL And to Learn a Profeuion... WHY NOTBECOME A HAIRDRESSER? We have 3 fully qualified Ml time intruclrosses and we teach all phases of beauty culture, hair styling and cutting, bleaching tmlma and permanent waving. You'll enioy our new remodelled and air- conditioned school. Fill Out This Coupon For More ipfa'rmation Alberta Beauty School 405 5th St. S. Lethbridge NAME............ ADDRESS CITY c Payment! Clattet Starting Now Low Monthly Tuition examined OTTAWA (CP) Justice Minister Otto Lang said this week "some work is un- der way" to determine how hospital abortion committees are carrying out their duties. He made the comment in the Commons but did not elaborate. He was replying to a ques- tion from William Scott (PC Victoria-Haliburton who said the government should introduce tougher abortion legislation. Mr. Scott and Douglas Roche Strathcona) both cited the case of a 15-year-old Niagara Falls, Ont., girl who was given an attempted abortion in 1971 when she was six months pregnant. The baby was born alive and lived for 2Vz hours. The operation was approved by an abortion committee at the Greater Niagara General Hospital. Hospital committees are empowered by federal law to approve abortions if the mother's life or mental health is endangered. Mr. Roche said the Com- mons health committee should examine whether the hospital committees are obey- ing the law. R. D. Gruenwald Social Credit Members' Lounge, Legislative Building Dear Mr. Gruenwald: I can hold my peace no longer, even though I live outside Lethbridge West. My Southern Alberta conscience bids me to speak. You see Dickie, (forgive me sonny, but I'm 87 years old now, and just can't bring myself to call someone 30 years my junior 'mister') I just have this terrible feeling deep in the pit of my heart that you have been led astray up there in that big House in the north. Us folks down here in Stagnant aren't citified, that's sure enough. We're pretty small town, I guess. We hardly even get into Lethbridge anymore the place is just gettin' too big. But we know what's right and what's sinful. What's troubling me is this Dickie (oops, slipped again) those things you said the other day about er, uh, porno shops telling young girls "how to do It pains me to even write down such words, son, much less imagine you saying them in public. Back in the good old days Dickie, we didn't even breathe a word about sugb. goings on, didn't acknowledge such places by so much as a glance, and here you go, shouting it to the rooftops. I can't help but think that's riot the real you talking, that's just garbage mouth you've picked up from the city slickers. Don't you know, boy, that talking about places like that in- formation birth control centre only gives 'em more publicity for their sinful pursuits. The only way to fight all this sex and cor- ruption is with silence, Dickie. Just ignore the whole thing. Nobody ever told us about any of those intimate things, Dick, and we got by all right, didn't we? Young folks don't need to know all the details it'll just confuse 'em. But what's worst of all, Dick, is all these rumors we hear, about all the members of the legislated assemblance how they forget all about their solid up bringing when they see the bright lights of the city and hear that honkey tonk music from the cellars of Jasper Avenue. How clean cut citizens and fami- ly men are driven to lapping up strong spirits by the loneliness of the big city, how they escape from the pressures of govern- ment opposition by pursuing cheap and flashy entertainment. And we hear that the members of the house actually use profane language when they get into heated debate, and use all manner of crude words. And don't you deny any of these charges, Dickie boy. I may have never been to Edmonton and I may have never set foot in the house (I'd just be embarrassed to go to a place like that, full of all those men) but I know what I know. Yours truly, Mrs. Ada Grundge 'VI II WiT CONTACT LENSES EYE GLASSES BRUCE PLAUSTEINER 303-Sth St. S. Phone 327-7704 A unique Christmas Gift at prices you can afford! GREYHOUND WISHES AVERY MERRY CHRISTMAS! It's that time of year again. When family and friends get together for holiday sharing. This year, drive home on the bus with us. Climb aboard a "Christmas Scenicruiser" and enjoy a safe, comfortable ride. No worries about highway driving conditions or cold-weather car problems. You'll find Greyhound service frequent and convenient... not to mention extra buses to make sure everyone gets home for Christmas. There's lots of room for Christmas parcels, too, whether you take them with you or ship early by GREYHOUND EXPRESS. HOLIDAY HELPER INFORMATION: S! ooooooo A02568 ;