Tuesday marks the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, and it’s the 33rd anniversary of what’s typically referred to as the Montreal Massacre. In terms of public displays of gender-based violence, it’s yet to be matched, but at least one woman is still killed every six days by an intimate partner. So how far have we come since December 6, 1989?
That stat above was produced in the annual report by Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice & Accountability, who also says that there’s been a 26 per cent increase in the number of women killed since before the pandemic. Why the increase? It’s a lot of the same pressures we’ve all been facing: pandemic stressors, economic uncertainty, and housing affordability. It’s become easier to ask for help, but it’s also become harder to give help.
So as we approach the 33rd anniversary of the Montreal Massacre, many community and advocacy organizations are looking for ways to turn the tide. Many groups are looking at ways to activate the community, and the White Ribbon campaign is focusing on men by asking them to look inward at toxic behaviours normalized in our society. This podcast? We’re talking to Cindy McMann, the new public educator for Guelph-Wellington Women in Crisis.
McMann joins us to talk about the lessons of the Montreal Massacre, and whether we’ve yet to develop the language to talk about acts of mass gender-based violence. She will also talk about the local factors that make a big difference, and how a perfect storm of issues are putting real pressure on services like Women in Crisis. And finally, McMann will discuss the need to focus on gender-based violence that happens in private, and what everyone, especially men, can do to make a safer world for everyone.
So let’s talk about all of our December 6 thoughts on this week’s edition of the Guelph Politicast!
You can learn all about Guelph-Wellington Women in Crisis and their services at their website. Follow Women in Crisis @gwwic on social media to take part in the “16 Days 16 Voices” campaign. To mark December 6 locally, you can go to the University of Guelph’s ceremony at the Adams Atrium in the Thornbrough building at 2:30 pm, while Women in Crisis will host a vigil at Marianne’s Park at 6:30 pm.
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