Today we join the international community in calling for an end to violence against women. In 1999, the United Nations General Assembly designated November 25th as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Violence against women is a violation of human rights and a consequence of ongoing gender inequalities.
67% of Canadians say they personally know at least one women who has been subjected to sexual or physical violence, yet violence against women goes largely unreported and is estimated to be significantly higher than official police-reported statistics suggest. The United Nations reports that "up to 70 percent of women experience violence in their lifetime"
Violence against women is not just a women’s issue. Violence against women affects everyone.
- Each year in Canada, an estimated 362,000 children witness or experience family violence.
- On any given day in Canada, an average of 3,300 women (along with their children) are sleep in an emergency shelter to escape domestic violence.
- Aboriginal women are 3.5 times more likely to be victims of violence compared to non-Aboriginal women.
- The cost of violence against women in Canada for health care, criminal justice, social services, and lost wages and productivity has been calculated at $4.8 billion per year.
Standing together, united, let's take this opportunity to be agents of change – join the chorus of voices calling for violence prevention education, gender equality and public acknowledgement of this human rights violation. The BC Green Party principles of social justice, non-violence and gender equality are essential in eliminating violence against women and must be included decision-making at every level of government. Let's be the voice today, and going forward, for the elimination of violence against women.