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Statement by Minister Marci Ien on the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

Statement by Minister Marci Ien on the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

Canada NewsWire

OTTAWA, ON, Dec. 6, 2023 /CNW/ - The Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, issued the following statement today on the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women: 

"December 6, 1989, is a day that shook Canada to its core. On this day, 34 years ago, a gunman walked into a classroom at Polytechnique Montréal, separated the women from the men and opened fire on the women. Fourteen women lost their lives that day, and 13 more were wounded – simply because they were women.

Their names were Geneviève Bergeron, Hélène Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Haviernick, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault, Annie Turcotte and Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz.

They were students, daughters, sisters, and friends – with unique talents and passions. One was an athlete. Another was a musician. One spoke five languages. Another wanted to be an engineer like her dad.

Today we say their names and remember that the misogyny they faced, is still a serious issue today. More than 6.2 million women in Canada aged 15 and over have experienced some form of intimate partner violence in their lifetime. In 2021 alone, 173 women and girls were killed violently – that's one woman every two days. Gender-based violence, sexism, transphobia, and homophobia remain a reality for far too many in our country.

While we cannot change the stories of the women who were taken from us so senselessly on December 6, 1989, we honour them today and will continue taking action to prevent further violence. We have taken that action through funding Crisis Hotlines in every province and territory; and implementing the historic National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence.

I invite all Canadians to be part of the solution by listening to survivors and experts on the frontlines; learning what gender-based violence is, how to spot it, and how you can help prevent it. We all need to continue to challenge and change the culture that allows this violence to persist.

Gender-based violence must not be tolerated in Canada. Together we can ensure that tragedies like the one that took place at Polytechnique Montréal never happen again."

SOURCE Women and Gender Equality Canada

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