CAUT Statement on December 6 [Violence against Women]

CAUT.ca – News
December 6, 2013

Each year, as we approach December 6, the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, CAUT and its members reflect upon the past year to identify the gains and losses for Canadian women who experience violence in their lives.

This past twelve months we have witnessed our federal government’s continued failure to develop a national action plan to end violence against women in Canada.  Despite support at the meeting of provincial ministers this past summer, the Conservative government has yet to agree to launch a national investigation into the missing and murdered Aboriginal women and girls in our country.

Work of the Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women and published in their recent Fact Sheet documents the following about violence against women and girls in Canada:

  • 51% of Canadian women experience at least one incident of sexual or physical assault since the age of 16
  • Women are killed by intimate partners at a rate three times higher than men
  • There are 582 documented cases of missing and murdered Aboriginal women – if applied proportionately to the rest of the female population, there would be over 18,000 missing Canadian women
  • Younger women under the age of 25 experience the highest incident of intimate partner violence
  • Women over the age of 65 are more likely than men of the same age to be victims of violence by marital partners
  • 11% of women experienced assault from a marital partner while pregnant
  • Women with an activity limitation (i.e. disability) have rates of marital violence almost twice as high as other women

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ report “The Gap in the Gender Gap: Violence Against Women in Canada” examines national and provincial budgets and shows how a lack of investment in strategies to end violence perpetuates the problem and creates additional financial costs more broadly.

Responding to similar concerns, the Canadian Network of Women’s Shelters and Transition Houses have launched Canada’s first national shelter data count project to provide a ‘snapshot’ of life in a shelter on a “typical” day. The results of the data count will be fed into the Global Shelter Data Count to help situate Canada internationally.

The Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) in partnership with the University of Western Ontario’s Centre for Research & Education on Violence against Women & Children (CREVAWC) is launching the first nation-wide survey on the impact of domestic violence on workers and workplaces, the results of which will help unions, employers, advocates and governments develop good public policy as well as provide essential data to support the labour movement’s work at the bargaining table.

Disturbingly,  we have  seen  in the past year the rise of misogynist men’s rights groups on campuses and in communities across the country – an alarming trend that requires our attention and action.  At the CAUT Council meeting last week, a motion was passed that CAUT commission a report to study the nature and impact of male rights groups across Canadian universities and colleges and take appropriate action to implement the Commission’s recommendations.

On December 6, CAUT encourages all its member associations to support projects and community actions that work towards ending violence against women and girls, and to actively participate in efforts to eliminate gender-based violence on our campuses.

Resources:

CRIAW English fact sheet on violence against women

http://www.criaw-icref.ca/print/new-criaw-fact-sheet-violence-against-women-canada

CRIAW French fact sheet on violence against women

http://www.criaw-icref.ca/fr/publications/feuillets-d%27information

CCPA report, “The Gap in the Gender Gap”

http://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/gap-gender-gap

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