Activists fight to end gender-based violence in Canada

by | Dec 12, 2018 | Headlines, Life

Syndee Walcott
Life Reporter

While it’s been 29 years since the Polytechnique shooting, violence against women is still a problem.

The Centre for Human Rights, Equity and Diversity invited students to honour the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. The event was held on Thursday, Dec. 6 to remember the 14 victims of the 1989 Montreal massacre.

“I think it’s just a great day for everyone to come together and remember the lives lost, an ensure that we don’t lose sight of what to some of those incidents,” said, Lori Diduch, Vice-President of Human Resources.

The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women was created to commemorate the anniversary of the Dec. 6, 1989 École Polytechnique Massacre, which claimed the lives of 14 women. The attacker claimed his motive for the shooting was anti-feminism.

According to the Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability, 106 women and girls were killed by men in Canada as of September 2018.

In 2017, 50,000 women worldwide were killed by partners or family members, according to a United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime report.

IGNITE President Monica Khosla said that this is an issue that should be addressed because it’s unacceptable that gender-based violence exists.

“It’s really important to shine the light on those who we unfortunately lost because of this very reason,” said Khosla.

There were performances by RAW (Raging Asian Women), a taiko drumming group made up of women who identify as being of East and Southeast Asian descent. There was also slam poetry by Paulina O’Keefe, a spoken word poet and activist.

Young Park, the director of RAW said the mission of RAW is to help social justice through taiko drumming. They come to events like this to support gender quality and give a voice through their drumming.

“It’s importance for us to speak up,” said Park.