Boss Lady Buzz: Etana Cain

Etana is a friend of mine whom I have been inspired by since we first met. I am so excited to introduce her to you as the next featured woman in my Boss Lady Buzz Series!

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Stunning Portrait by Terra Loire from Friendofafemme.tumblr.com

After Etana kindly answered a series of questions I gave her, she provided me with insightful, educational words that I am proud to share with you:

Etana was born and raised in a close-knit community in Toronto. She grew up in a family where politics was discussed around the dinner table. She thought a lot about social justice and activism in high school, but truly became involved when she attended McGill University.

At McGill, Etana participated in a program called “McGill Women In House” which she says helped shape her career path and helped her to understand the various ways in which “government can be a vehicle for social change”.

She is involved in a number of initiatives and says at most tables she volunteers or works on, she is often the only young woman, and only black woman in the room. She believes it’s especially important for women who are radicalized, Indigenous, living with disabilities, trans, queer or gender binary to be represented at these tables. I agree with Etana’s opinion that “Greater diversity around decision-making tables means more equitable decision making.” This being said, she is committed to looking for opportunities for others to contribute in this way.

On this topic, she also quotes the late Canadian Politician, Rosemary Brown: “We must open the doors and we must see to it that they remain open, so that others can pass through.

 ” I am inspired by strong black women who stand up and speak truth to power.”  – Etana Cain

Another one of her favourite quotes comes from Political Activist Angela Davis, who said “I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change, I am changing the things I cannot accept.”

Some of the topics Etana would like to create more awareness about include gender-based violence, racism, hate, poverty, employment and housing issues in Toronto and across Canada. She believes if we stand together we can push forward change. She is also “committed to being an ally in the work ahead to end the inequities that persist with respect to Canada’s treatment of Indigenous Peoples.”

In order to better educate herself and understand this topic further, she took the initiative to read the summary of The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and she encourages others to do the same.

I could talk about how inspiring this incredible woman is for days, but hopefully this interview speaks for itself how passionate and driven Etana is to making Canada a better place. I will strive to become more educated and volunteer as a young woman because of what I learned from her. Thank you Etana!

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