YWCA Canada Rose Campaign Says Women Forced to Choose between Poverty and

Calls for Federal Government Leadership on Policy Coordination

OTTAWA, Nov. 25 /CNW/ - YWCA Canada, the country's single largest provider of shelter services for women and second largest provider of childcare, launched its annual Rose Campaign today, calling on the government to ensure every woman fleeing violence has access to shelter and no woman leaving shelter is forced to choose between poverty or a return to abuse.

"On the eve of the 20th anniversary of that shocking day in December, 1989, we are here in Ottawa with violence survivors from across the country to say that the time for change is now, not in another twenty years," says YWCA CEO Paulette Senior. "I am honoured to be visiting MPs in the company of these incredible advocates for change who know from experience what women need - access to shelter; a legal system that works for women; safe, affordable housing, a secure income and childcare to support their ability to work."

"I want to remind the Members of Parliament that it was the murders at l'École Polytechnique that established a Canadian consensus for gun control legislation," says Senior. "The vast majority of women killed with guns in Canada today are killed with a shotgun or rifle, not a handgun. Registering long guns is a public safety issue and a small price to pay for every life saved."

"Over 100,000 women and children enter shelters in Canada annually," says Ann Decter, Director of Advocacy & Public Policy. "That's the population of a small Canadian city. They leave homes, communities and jobs in a courageous effort to build a safe life. We know the supports women need, it's time for coordinated government action to put them in place."

Launched on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, YWCA's annual Rose Campaign runs until December 6 and commemorates Canada's National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.

About YWCA Canada:

YWCA Canada is the country's oldest and largest women's multi-service organization. With 33 Member Associations operating in more than 400 districts and communities across the country, our Turning Point Programs for Women(TM) - which address personal safety, economic security and well-being - reach out to 1 million women and girls in nine provinces and one territory. YWCA is the largest national provider of shelter to women, serving 25,000 women, children and teen girls including 6,000 fleeing domestic violence each year. We are the largest provider of literacy, life skills, employment and counselling programs in the country, and the second largest provider of childcare services. YWCA Canada is a member association of the World YWCA which unites 25 million women and girls worldwide and spans 125 countries. For more information about YWCA Canada and our Member Associations, visit www.ywcacanada.ca.


For further information: For further information: on YWCA Canada, the Rose Campaign or to set up an interview with: Paulette Senior, CEO of YWCA Canada; Ann Decter, Director of Advocacy & Public Policy; Barbara Burdick, Vice-President, DAWN Canada, Vancouver; Chantale Lavoie, women's advocate, Ottawa, available for interviews in French; Janet Holden, women's advocate, Belleville, ON; Janet Menezes, women's advocate, Toronto, ON; Debra Paris, women's advocate, Halifax; Michelle Redmond, women's advocate, Dartmouth; Zelda Rempel, Board Member, DAWN Canada, Saskatoon; Ghislaine Sathoud, women's advocate, Montreal, available for interviews in French; Marie Speakman, women's advocate, Yellowknife; Deborah Torre, women's advocate, Montreal, available for interviews in French; Contact Laura Tilley, Communications & Marketing Manager at (416) 962-8881 x 233

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