About the Project

Despite being just over half of the Niagara population, women are underrepresented in local government, especially in senior leadership. On Regional Council, 25 per cent of councillors are women and no apparent visible minorities serve on Niagara Region or local municipal councils.

Niagara Region’s Seat at the Table program aims to address barriers that women face running for municipal office and to improve the environment once elected. The goal is to increase the number of women, particularly underrepresented women, elected for municipal government in Niagara by promoting understanding, awareness and confidence through education, mentorship and support to those interested in running for election.

The program consists of four workshops that will help women and underrepresented groups feel informed and educated when making the decision to run for local government. Those elected will then be invited to participate in three sessions in 2023.

Seat at the Table will provide participants with the knowledge and skills to run a successful campaign, and if elected, support throughout their term.

This initiative is funded by Women and Gender Equality Canada in partnership with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and:

  • Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce
  • Women in Niagara
  • City of St. Catharines
  • YWCA
  • Future Black Female
  • Services 4 Humanity
  • Muslim Senior Circle
  • Niagara Region’s Women’s Advisory Committee

Session 1: Introduction to Municipal Government, Making the decision to run for office

MAY 5, 2022
Session 2: Getting organized to run

JUNE 1, 2022
Session 3: Working with other levels of government, policy and planning

JUNE 29, 2022
Session 4: Managing public scrutiny, harassment, addressing bias and discrimination

Session 5: Council procedures for elected women

Session 6: Mock Council meeting for elected women

Session 7: Supporting female municipal leaders