NDP Critic for the Status of Women Leah Gazan issued the following statement
“Every six days, a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner. Nearly 45 per cent of Canadian women have experienced some form of intimate partner violence, and this rate is increasing. The numbers are even higher for Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA people.
Thousands of Canadian women, many with children, sleep in domestic violence shelters every night, and hundreds more are turned away because shelters are full. Many are forced to choose between violence on the streets or violence at home, a choice no one should ever have to make. It doesn’t have to be this way.
There is a desperate need for more low-barrier safe spaces and transitional housing for women and gender-diverse people fleeing gender-based violence. It’s unacceptable that funding announced by the Liberal government in its Violence Prevention Strategy from fall 2020 remains almost entirely unused. We need to treat this crisis of violence with the urgency it deserves.
We also cannot address gendered violence without addressing poverty. Poverty is one the biggest factors pushing women and gender-diverse people into dangerous relationships and situations and preventing them from leaving. In turn, intimate partner violence is a leading cause of women's poverty and homelessness.
A Guaranteed Livable Basic Income (GLBI), as called for by the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, would help uphold women's rights to live in dignity and security. GLBI can reduce the risk of domestic violence, help women avoid dangerous relationships in the first place, and help them exit abusive situations.
Today and every day, New Democrats stand with survivors, and everyone impacted by violence against women and gender-diverse people. As we begin the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence, let’s redouble our efforts to end gender-based violence in all its forms. We must act now to save lives.”