Minister Ambrose calls for community action to help end "honour crimes"

OTTAWA, July 12 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women, today repeated the Government of Canada's condemnation of so-called honour killings, and called for community-based groups and stakeholder organizations to propose projects for Status of Women Canada funding to address the issue.

"All Canadian girls and women are equal to men under the law, and have the right to live free from violence and abuse," Minister Ambrose said. "Violence directed at women and girls which may be viewed as culturally acceptable has no place in Canadian society. This type of violence, often known as 'honour killings,' is a heinous abuse of power and human rights."

To help address this problem, Minister Ambrose is urging women's and other community-based organizations to submit to the Women's Program of Status of Women Canada project proposals that explore, expose and contribute to ending violence against women, including the crime of honour killing. By working to combat the source of the violence at the community level, as well as through the justice system, the root causes can be better challenged and addressed.

"People come to this country to enjoy and embrace the values and opportunities that Canada provides, and as a nation we are proud of the contributions made by our diverse cultural communities," said Minister Ambrose. "However, killing or mutilating anyone, least of all a family member, is utterly unacceptable under all circumstances and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law."

The Government of Canada has been explicit in condemning culturally motivated violence such as "honour killings." In November 2009, the Government introduced Discover Canada: The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship. This citizenship guide includes an important section in which it is explicitly explained that Canada's openness and generosity do not extend to barbaric cultural practices that tolerate spousal abuse, so-called honour killings, female genital mutilation or other gender-based violence.

Projects funded through Status of Women Canada have had and will continue to have a direct impact on the lives of girls and women across the country by working to end violence against women and girls, improving women's and girls' economic security and prosperity, and encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles.

To read Minister Ambrose's full statement, please go to: http://www.swc-cfc.gc.ca/

Ce texte est également disponible en français.

For news releases and information on Status of Women Canada, go to www.swc-cfc.gc.ca.

SOURCE Status of Women Canada

For further information: For further information: Jonah Mozeson, Office of the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women, 613-799-1609; Nanci-Jean Waugh, Director General, Communications and Strategic Planning, Status of Women Canada, 613-995-7839


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