OTTAWA, Feb. 3, 2012 /CNW/ - In Canada, women and girls are equal to men
and boys under the law and all have the right to live free from
violence and abuse. The freedom and security to make one's own choices
in life is a cornerstone of Canadian democracy. Our government is
committed to protecting women and girls and other vulnerable persons
from all forms of violence and to holding offenders accountable for
their acts. We have been very clear: so-called "honour" killings are
barbaric, and like all family homicides, represent a serious violation
of Canadian laws.
As Minister for Status of Women, I am proud that our government
continues to take strong action to ensure the equality, safety and
security of women and girls in communities across Canada. We are
committed to ending violence against women and girls in all its forms,
including violence committed in the name of "honour."
Let me be very clear: these forms of violence are the actions of
individuals. They can be distinguished from other forms of family
violence because they are often committed with some degree of approval
and/or collusion on the part of individual family members and/or
others. As a result, victims have fewer options for seeking help or
leaving abusive situations.
All acts of violence against women and girls are crimes, serious abuses
of power and severe violations of their dignity and human rights. I am
proud that our government stands against these heinous crimes and is
making progress on addressing these issues.
Our government has been working with communities to improve safety and
security and has supported a number of important grassroots projects
that produce concrete results for women and girls in every part of the
country. For example, we supported a project in Edmonton that addresses
violence against women and girls, committed in the name of "honour".
The project educates and trains social workers, police officers and
Our government has also made important changes to the citizenship guide,
Discover Canada: The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship. The guide includes information on common Canadian values such as
democracy, human rights and the rule of law. These values include the
fair and equal treatment of women and girls. The guide further stresses
that "honour" killings, female genital mutilation and acts of
gender-based violence will be severely punished.
I will continue to work with communities across the country and with my
colleagues across all levels of government to explore additional
measures our government can take to protect vulnerable women and girls
and to break the cycle of violence. It is only by working together and
by enhancing our knowledge and understanding of this issue that we will
end all forms of violence against women and girls.
Rona Ambrose is the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and
Minister for Status of Women.
SOURCE Status of Women Canada
For further information:
| Michelle Bakos |
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Public Works and
Government Services and Minister for
Status of Women
| Nanci-Jean Waugh |
Director General, Communications and
Status of Women Canada