Fonds 10-060 - Women Plan Toronto fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Women Plan Toronto fonds

General material designation

  • Graphic material
  • Object
  • Textual record
  • Textual record (electronic)
  • Sound recording (electronic)

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Level of description

Fonds

Reference code

CA ON0034 10-060

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Statement of scale (architectural)

Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • 1983-1998 (Creation)
    Creator
    Women Plan Toronto

Physical description area

Physical description

26.5 cm of textual records
125 photographs
12 floppy disks 3.5''
2 buttons
2 banners
1 t-shirt
1 audiocassette

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1985-2004)

Administrative history

In 1982, a ground-breaking conference about gender perspective on urban issues was organized in Toronto by Women In/And Planning (WIAP). It sought to examine the underlying disconnections between urban planning practices and women’s needs.

In 1985, the creation of Women Plan Toronto (WPT) was inspired by an article in Women Environment about Women Plan London (WPL) in the UK. Reggie Modlich was a founding member of WPT and its main coordinator. It was supported by a grant from the federal government via the Status of Women agency as well as by WIAP.
Reggie Modlich defined WPT as ‘a grassroots women’s organization that uses participatory methods to involve diverse women in changing urban planning processes and outcomes in Toronto. Its purpose is to raise awareness and advocate alternatives for addressing women’s planning concerns’.

WPT was composed of a voluntary committee called ‘circles’ in order to avoid the traditional male hierarchical structure of organization. All members who attended a meeting could be part of the decision-making process. Thus, WPT started to exploring gender issues in urban planning by holding informal discussions. Women from various social backgrounds were invited to talk about their experiences and ideas relating to Toronto’s urban environment. The groups explored issues related to child care, public transit, personal safety, municipal governance and elections, housing, and urban planning.

Barbara Loevinger Rahder explains that ‘the structure of the organization, fluctuated with its memberships, depending on who is involved what their interests are, and what issues are on the public agenda (or put on the public agenda by WPT). There [was] one part-time staff member, and a core of about seven or eight volunteers who [were] usually very active in the circles and on various projects. Another fifty women or so [were] less active members, and up to another 3000 individuals and organizations [were] part of a broader network which [was] kept informed and sometimes mobilized around important issues and events’.

From 1985 to 1998, WPT took up various issues and started executing various projects. In this way, during the 1980s and 1990s, WPT had a direct impact on urban planning in Toronto: ‘For more than a decade, the organization has worked to focus attention on women’s needs in the city, to critique the inequities of mainstream planning, and to develop alternative visions of what planning and urban life would be like if women diverse needs were taken into account’.

In 2004, Toronto Women’s City Alliance (TWCA) succeeded WPT.

Custodial history

Scope and content

This fonds is composed mainly of textual records; administrative records of the collective, minutes, correspondence, newsletters, conference and workshop documents, documents related to special events and projects, photographs.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Arrangement

The records are arranged according to eight series; Organization, Membership, Correspondence, Communication and Public Relations, Submissions statements and responses, Conferences and workshops, Special projects, Special events.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

The majority of the fonds is open and accessible, however, some files are restricted for a predetermined period of time. Please ask ARCS staff for further information.

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Description record identifier

CA

Institution identifier

ON0034

Rules or conventions

RAD

Status

Draft

Level of detail

Full

Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Revised in June 2016

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Script of description

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