The incidence of violence against women remains critical
From November 25 until December 6, the YWCA of Montreal is taking action
Montreal, November 25, 2016 – One of the priority social issues for the YWCA of Montréal is violence against women, a persisting and critical social problem. The YWCA will be particularly active during the 12 days of action to eliminate all forms of violence against women. These days of action, which start today and continue until December 6, have become an annual tradition of engagement in actions of protest, solidarity, and public education aimed at creating positive and long-lasting change with regard to violence against women. Such change depends on a collective change of mentality.
In 2016, Québec witnessed multiple manifestations of inequality, exclusion, social and gender-based violence, all of them serious and unacceptable in a society claiming to be egalitarian based on the fact that women have achieved equality under the law. In practice, however, women’s experience is not the same as that of men. We have only to consider the runaway girls who were recruited for sexual exploitation, the expansion of trafficking and sexual exploitation during major sporting events, the normalization of rape culture in the collective imagination (for example, university initiation rituals), and the lack of credibility accorded to women who report sexual assault—especially if they happen to Indigenous women.
It is more important than ever for the YWCA of Montreal to take part in the 12 Days campaign
- The YWCA will participate in YWCA Canada’s 2016 #Neblâmezpaslavictime / #NeverBlametheVictim campaign in the social media. This year’s theme is rape culture, and the goal is to raise public awareness of the need to change social attitudes that blame women who are victims of sexual assault rather than focussing blame on the men who commit these crimes.
- As a member of the 12 Days committee, which is composed of feminist groups and coordinated by the Fédération des femmes du Québec, the YWCA of Montréal has helped to organize the Agissons ensemble [Acting together] campaign that commences in the social media today. Iris Boudreau has created five illustrations to convey different aspects of violence against women. They will be disseminated online, where the general public will be invited to share them and send them to representatives of all levels of government. The 12 Days committee is also organizing a commemorative event on December 6 in Montréal. The theme of his year’s commemoration ceremony, to which the public and media are invited, is women’s empowerment. The gathering will observe a minute of silence to commemorate the 14 young women who were assassinated on December 6, 1989, at Montréal’s École Polytechnique.
- The YWCA of Montréal is holding a theme day on sexual consent, to take place November 30, from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Holden-Fisher room, where the public and the media will be invited to experience the virtual reality project entitled Connais-tu LA limite? / Do You NO The Limit? The issue of sexual consent, the subject of much debate over the year, will be addressed in a luncheon presentation by the 2016 Young Woman of Distinction, Kharoll-Ann Souffrant, and two Youth Department project officers who helped to develop the content for Consent in 360°.
Since 1875, the Y des femmes de Montréal has dedicated itself to preventing violence, and developing the skills, self-esteem, independence, and personal development of women and girls. In this way, it helps to build a better future for women and girls, with the vision of a just society in which women and girls have power and the opportunity to participate to the full extent of their abilities.