Official Opposition for the Status of Women critic Niki Ashton (Churchill) made the following statement on International Day to End Violence Against Women :
“On the International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women we recommit to ending the violence that so many women in Canada and around the world face.
Since 1981 the international community has marked November 25th as a day against violence against women, after the 1960 assassination of three political activists, the Mirabal sisters, on the orders of Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo. Unfortunately, today women and girls across the world still face violence simply because they are women.
In Canada, violence against women remains a barrier to women’s equality. Even though violent crime has decreased, sexual violence directed at women and girls remains stagnant. Young women face the highest levels of sexual violence. Indigenous women and girls are seven times more likely to be killed than non-Indigenous women.
Despite these facts, the Conservatives continue to obstruct efforts to change the reality that women face, nationally and internationally. Deep cuts to women’s organizations have made it increasingly difficult for critical work to take place. Clear directives prohibit organizations from engaging in advocacy calling for systemic change. A failure to call for a National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women means we still don’t have the answers needed to take action.
We need a National Action Plan to End Violence Against Women. From coast to coast to coast, agencies, organizations, activists and survivors are calling for a coordinated, funded approach to deal with violence against women. It is time the federal government listen to women and take action, through a National Action Plan.
The International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women is marked to acknowledge that violence against women and girls is present in the everyday. Through meaningful, coordinated action driven by women that is supported at the federal level, we can aim to end the violence that women face.”