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December 5, 2018

The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women remembers the 14 women killed at École Polytechnique de Montréal.

Gender-based violence continues to take lives around the globe. A UN report shows that this year alone 50,000 women have been killed by an intimate partner. Every six days in Canada a woman loses her life to gender-based violence. The number killed as an indirect result of sexist policies and laws is much higher.

The labour movement mourns these women and calls on the government to restore programs and policies that worked to end gender-based violence, including reinstating the scheduled 33 per cent funding increase to Ontario Rape Crisis Centres, restoring the modernized health and physical education curriculum, and restarting the Roundtable on Gender-based Violence.

“The Ford government must act to end gender-based violence by creating conditions where women have economic justice, equality and safety in our province,” said Ontario Federation of Labour President Chris Buckley. “Instead, it has cut decent work laws and important resources, tools and funding to programs that worked to end gender-based violence. As someone who grew up in a home where there was domestic violence, I know the importance of these resources for everyone in Ontario.”

“The cancellation of programs like the Roundtable on Gender-based Violence shows that this government does not take violence against women seriously,” said OFL Secretary-Treasurer Patty Coates. “Beyond cancelling important programs and funding, government cuts to decent work laws, and the cancellation of $15 minimum wage will affect women deeply, since women are more likely to be employed in low-wage work. Without economic security many women will be unable to leave situations where they experience domestic violence.”

“It is important to acknowledge that racialized women, Indigenous women, and women with disabilities are more likely to face domestic and sexual violence,” said OFL Executive Vice-President Ahmad Gaied. “We cannot separate the struggle to end violence against women from our work to end able-ism, racism, hate, Islamophobia and bigotry.”

The OFL has produced a booklet on bargaining domestic violence leave into collective agreements, called Domestic Violence Goes to Work Every Day: A Bargaining Guide.

This December 6, the OFL encourages everyone to sign on to the CLC #donewaiting petition demanding laws that will bring an end to gender-based violence. To sign, click here.

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  • Women Workers
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