Local agencies who work to end gender-based violence in our community are encouraging community members to gather at Spirit Square at noon on Tuesday Dec. 6 to take part in a vigil in honour of the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.
This year’s service is presented by the Campbell River and North Island Transition Society, Campbell River Family Services, the Campbell River Nurturing Society, Foundry Campbell River, Laichwiltach Family Life Society and the Sexual Assault Program. The event will feature drumming, speakers, information booths and a remembrance of the 14 victims of the murders of 14 women in 1989.
“Take a moment to consider what actions you can take to stand up against misogyny, sexism and hate to foster a culture of respect,” said Diane Palmer, public relations coordinator for the Campbell River and North Island Transition Society. “Be present at the Spirit Square at 12 p.m. to honour all who lost their lives due to gender-based violence.”
It has been 33 years since the murder of 14 young women at Polytechnique Montréal (Dec. 6, 1989). This act of violent misogyny shook our country and led Parliament to designate Dec. 6 as The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. On Dec. 6 each year, communities gather to remember: 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, whose lives ended during the murders at Polytechnique Montreal.
In Canada and around the world, women, girls, 2SLGBTQQIA+ (two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, plus) and gender diverse individuals face unacceptable violence and discrimination.
The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women is about remembering those who have experienced gender-based violence and those who have died because of it. It is also a time to take action. Achieving a Canada free from gender-based violence requires everyone living in this country to educate themselves and their families and communities on gender-based violence, centre the voices of survivors in our actions and speak up against harmful behaviours.
The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women occurs during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, which began Nov. 25. For more information about the 16 Days of Activism, check out the Campbell River and North Island Transition Society Facebook page.