VICTORIA, Jan. 15, 2018 /CNW/ - Canadians believe in gender equality, yet to make it a reality we must continue our efforts at ending gender-based violence. That's why today, Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Status of Women and Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South, on behalf of the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minster of Status of Women, announced Government of Canada funding for projects that will help reduce violence against Indigenous women in British Columbia.
The Native Courtworker and Counselling Association of British Columbia is receiving $267,289 for a 36-month project to identify and advocate for culturally-relevant changes to provincial child protection policies and programs. The goal is to facilitate Indigenous women's access to these services, and reduce the likelihood that they stay in unsafe households to avoid being separated from their children.
The organization will engage and mobilize key stakeholders to increase their knowledge of the impact of over-representation of Indigenous children and youth in the child protection justice system. Together they will identify existing measures, policies, and procedures contributing to this over-representation. Based on the findings, the organization will develop alternative measures that are culturally-appropriate and can be integrated within the mainstream child welfare system in British Columbia.
The British Columbia Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres is receiving $450,600 for a 36-month project to look at the local context in communities in Northern B.C. and identify gaps in responses to sexual exploitation and human trafficking of Indigenous girls and women. The organization will engage women and girls, elders, service providers and other community stakeholders to assess underlying causes of vulnerability, and address them through collaborative, coordinated community-led responses.
The focus of this project will also be strategies to support women and girls impacted by sexual exploitation and trafficking in the Surrey and Nanaimo areas. The project aims to build local capacity of communities through awareness, education, and community led action plans.
"Gender-based violence remains a persistent barrier to gender equality in our country, and we know that Indigenous women and girls are more likely to be victims of this kind of violence. That's why the federal government is committed to supporting organizations like the Native Courtworker and Counselling Association of British Columbia and the British Columbia Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres. Funding for these projects will help us achieve our goal of addressing and preventing gender-based violence."
The Honourable Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Status of Women
"I am proud of the federal government's commitment to advancing gender equality. I am also pleased that this collaboration with Native Courtworker and Counselling Association of British Columbia and the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres will help reduce violence against Indigenous women. Everyone, including their children, will benefit from these initiatives."
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Status of Women
Member of Parliament, Winnipeg South
"We welcome this opportunity to collaborate with the Government of Canada in order to influence culturally-relevant changes to provincial child protection policies and programs in British Columbia. By better meeting the needs of Indigenous women and their families, this action will help remove one more barrier to gender equality in our Province."
Darlene Shackelly, Executive Director
Native Courtworker and Counselling Association of British Columbia
"This partnership with the federal government will make a real difference in the lives of Indigenous women, girls, and their families by improving community responses to issues of sexual exploitation and human trafficking. The more we do to build the capacity of communities through awareness, education, and community led action plans, the better off those communities will be."
Leslie Varley, Executive Director
BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres
- Status of Women Canada works to address systemic barriers to the full participation of women in all aspects of Canadian life with a focus on three priorities: increasing women's economic security and prosperity; encouraging women in leadership and decision-making roles; and, ending violence against women and girls.
- In June 2017, the Minister of Status of Women, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, announced $100.9 million for the first federal strategy to prevent and address gender-based violence. The Strategy is based on three pillars: prevention, support for survivors and their families, and promoting responsive legal and justice systems.
- The Government of Canada is committed to advancing reconciliation with Inuit, First Nations, and the Métis Nation. The focus is on building a renewed relationship with Indigenous Peoples, one based on the recognition of rights, respect, co-operation, and partnership.
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SOURCE Status of Women Canada
For further information: Célia Canon, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Status of Women, 613-862-3270; Nanci-Jean Waugh, Director General, Status of Women Canada, 819-420-6810