York students respond to sexual assault on campus: Time to come together to end violence against women

    TORONTO, Sept. 8 /CNW/ - The York Federation of Students (YFS) is deeply
saddened to hear that a student on York University - Keele Campus - was
sexually assaulted on September 7, 2007. The YFS is committed to ensuring that
students have a safe campus to learn, live and work.
    "It is important to remember that incidents of sexual assault and other
forms of violence on campus are not isolated incidents. There needs to be
broader systemic change within our communities to improve safety and
security," said Gilary Massa, Vice-President Equity of the York Federation of
    On the evening of September 8, 2007 members of the York community will be
participating in the Toronto "Take Back the Night" march to recognise that the
struggle to end violence against women is far from over. "Take Back the Night"
is a campaign to empower women to stand united against sexual assault and to
recognise that empowerment comes through collective action. Both men and women
are encouraged to support the campaign to end violence against women. Members
of the York community and the YFS Executive, along with students from across
the GTA, will be attending this event in order to raise awareness about
incidents such as the one that took place recently at the York Campus and
other incidents involving women students that have recently taken place.
    "When I heard about this incident I was shocked, and as a woman, I found
myself feeling very alone and helpless," said Massa. "As student
representatives, I feel that it is our students' union's responsibility to
ensure that no woman feels this way and our campus is a safe learning
environment for all students."

    The YFS will be working collaboratively with the York University
Administration to ensure that the campus remains safe and that there is a
forum for women to speak openly and honestly about their personal experience
at York University. York University students will also be working with
students from across the province, through the Canadian Federation of
Students, to promote the "No Means No" anti-date rape campaign and to develop
cross-campus strategies for ending violence against women.

For further information:

For further information: Contact: Gilary Massa, VP Equity, Tel: (416)
736-2100 ext. 20253 (office), (647) 869-2101 (cell)

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