She Also Serves
Jewish Women in the Canadian Armed Forces
On November 7, 2018 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rose in the House of Commons to deliver an apology for the Government of Canada’s decision on June 7, 1939 not to allow the Jewish refugees on board the MS St. Louis entry into Canada. Ironically, during the Second World War 17,000 Jews were enlisted in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), proudly serving their country despite Canada’s “none is too many” Jewish immigration policy. Of these 17,000, over 250 were women. While the chapter "Jewish Women in Uniform" in Ellin Bessner's 2018 book Double Threat: Canadian Jews and World War II and the 2017 article "She Also Served" by Saundra Lipton have highlight the participation of Jewish women in the Canadian Armed Forces during the Second World War, there is generally a dearth of public awareness of the role of Jewish women in the Canadian military.
The stories of forty-one Jewish servicewomen (Air Force, Army and Navy) from the Second World War are featured on this website. These stories served as a springboard to the call for submissions of art influenced by these stories. The work of nine artists are featured in an online exhibition, "She Also Served: Jewish Canadian Servicewomen in the Second World War," bringing to life the stories of Jewish women who served in the Canadian military during the Second World War. The exhibition opened online May 3, 2021 and will be physically exhibited at The Military Museums, Calgary in May 2022.
She Also Serves is an opportunity to introduce some exceptional women to our community, to our country, and beyond our borders.
Image courtesy of Alex Dworkin Canadian Jewish Archives