National Action Committee on the Status of Women
The National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC) is a Canadian feminist activist organization. NAC was founded in 1971 as a pressure group to lobby for the implementation of the 167 recommendations made in the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada's 1970 report on matters such as day care, birth control, maternity leave, family law, education and pensions. Initiated by the Committee for the Equality of Women in Canada which was founded in 1966 and successfully lobbied for the creation of the Royal Commission, NAC was founded as CEWC's successor on January 30, 1971 with the purpose of being for the exchange of information about the activities and plans for action of the women's participating groups" and to "spearhead a drive for the implementation of those recommendations of the Royal Commission Report on the Status of Women which are aimed at equality of opportunity for women.
A coalition of 22 groups when it originated under the name of the National Ad Hoc Committee on the Status of Women, NAC eventually grew into the largest national feminist organization with a total of 700 groups claiming affiliation. Its mandate grew beyond the implementation of the Royal Commission's recommendations to include issues such as poverty, racism, same-sex rights and violence against women.
NAC received much of its funding from the federal government until cuts by the Brian Mulroney government in the wake of NAC's opposition to the Charlottetown Accord forced the organization to lay off its staff and cut its budget. The cuts continued during the Jean Chrétien government and, in 1998, the group largely ceased operations for a time after Status of Women Canada, a department of the federal government, ceased granting money for day-to-day operations. NAC soon accumulated debts in excess of $100,000 and was forced to close some of its regional offices. Although NAC's activities were greatly reduced through the 1990s into the 21st century. NAC has revived and renewed itself in recent years and is primarily funded largely through donations and membership fees.
NAC Chairpersons and Presidents
- Laura Sabia (1971-1974)
- Grace Hartman (1974-1975)
- Lorna Marsden (1975-1977)
- Kay Macpherson (1977-1979)
- Lynn McDonald (1979-1981)
- Jean Wood (1981-1982)
- Doris Anderson (1982-1984)
- Chaviva Hosek (1984-1986)
- Louise Dulude (1986-1988)
- Lynn Kaye (1988-1990)
- Judy Rebick (1990-1993)
- Sunera Thobani (1993-1996)
- Joan Grant-Cummings (1996-1999)
- Terri Brown (2000-2002)
- Sungee John (2003-2005, interim)
- Dolly Williams (2006- )