An intimate gathering was hosted by the Revelstoke Women’s Shelter last night (Dec. 6) to raise awareness for violence against women and to commemorate the 14 women who were murdered at École Polytechnique in 1989.
Raise Your Voice, a night to raise awareness for gender-based violence, was held at Conversations Coffee from 6:30–8:30 p.m. The night provided an opportunity for conversation, commemoration, and live musical performances.
Dec. 6 is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, which was instituted by Parliament after an armed man walked into an engineering class at a university in Quebec, separated the women from the men, and opened fire on the women of the class, killing 14 and injuring 10.
The day now serves as a reminder of gender-based violence against women in Canada and around the world.
During the ceremony, the names of the 14 murdered women were read aloud while roses were laid in front of the photos, surrounded by the flicker of candle light.
The names of the 14 murdered women are:
• 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
• Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz
The ceremony was also held in remembrance of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.
Greg Kenyon, Principal of Revelstoke Secondary School, was a guest speaker at the intimate event, speaking from the perspective of an educator, father, and husband on the subject of gender-based violence.
According to data from the Canadian Femicide Observatory, 173 women and girls in Canada were killed by violence in 2021.
Statistics from Women and Gender Equality Canada indicate that at least 44 per cent of heterosexual women, 67 per cent of LGBTQ+ women, and 59 per cent of transgender and gender-diverse people have experienced some form of psychological, physical, or sexual violence at home, in public, or at work. Statistics Canada also reported that more than 60 per cent of Indigenous women have experienced physical or sexual assault in their lifetime, and 81 per cent of Indigenous women who were in the child-welfare system had been assaulted.
May Davis, Cale Noseworthy and Aorangi performed at the event, which was sponsored by Stoke FM, Conversations Coffee House, and La Baguette.
For domestic violence support, call the Revelstoke Women’s Shelter’s Crisis Line at (250) 837-1111 or visit their website at revelstokewomensshelter.ca.
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