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Canadian Association for Equality Media Advisory – For Immediate Release

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: Please Include Male Children in Your Compassion

TORONTO, ONTARIO — (November 10, 2018)

Dear Prime Minister Justin Trudeau:

This is direct response and open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau regarding his press release, Statement by the Prime Minister on the International Day of the Girl. (Trudeau, 2018)

The Canadian Association for Equality commends our Prime Minister on his compassion and his strong championing of female children in the developing world. At the same time, we ask that Mr. Trudeau extend this same compassion to male children.

There are examples of oppressive, gendered restriction on boys in Afghanistan. Many boys are used as sex slaves or sex workers, in a barbaric socially-sanctioned sex industry called “Bacha Bazi”. (Chopra, 2017) These boys are also in need of intervention for education and personal security. It is not commonly known, but the majority of sex workers in Afghanistan are underage boys. Due to restrictive gender rules on females, underage boys are often burdened with the responsibility to support their entire family. The boys often have no recourse but to resort to sex work.

Gender equality is not a zero sum game. We all benefit from an honest, evidence-based and comprehensive approach to gender-based public policy in international development.

We hope Mr. Trudeau will speak out against these abuses of boys on International Men’s Day, this Monday November 19th.

Justin Trottier
Executive Director, Canadian Association for Equality

The Canadian Association for Equality is committed to achieving equality for all Canadians, regardless of sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, family status, race, ethnicity, creed, age or disability.


Chopra, A. (2017, July 18). Afghan Soldiers Are Using Boys As Sex Slaves And The US Is Looking The Other Way. Retrieved from The Washington Post:

Trudeau, J. (2018, October 11). Statement by the Prime Minister on the International Day of the Girl. Retrieved from Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada: