Restorative Justice: Taking Action Against Gender Violence

WICC has continually supported grassroots organizations fighting violence against women through prayer, grants and resources.

Violence against women happens in all cultures and religions, in all ethnic and racial communities, at every age, and in every income group.

Statistics reported by the Canadian government and Department of Justice over the last ten years consistently echo our concern.

Death Approximately every six days, a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner. Out of the 83 police-reported intimate partner homicides in 2014, 67 of the victims—over 80%—were women.

Rates of spousal violence and homicide are highest for women in the 15 to 24 age group.

Aboriginal women (First Nations, Inuit and Métis) are six times more likely to be killed than non-Aboriginal women.

Affect on Children Children who witness violence in the home have twice the rate of psychiatric disorders as children from non-violent homes.
Emergency Shelters

According to Statistics Canada 2014, on any given night in Canada, 3,491 women and their 2,724 children sleep in shelters because it isn’t safe at home.

Statistics Canada data from 2019 shows emergency shelters for those fleeing gender-based violence turned away nearly 1,000 women and children a day before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Economic Costs It’s estimated that each year, Canadians collectively spend $9 billion to deal with the aftermath of spousal violence alone, according to the Department of Justice. This figure includes immediate costs, such as emergency room visits and related costs, such as loss of income. It also includes tangible costs such as funerals, and intangible costs such as pain and suffering.
Age Rates of intimate partner violence are higher among young women aged 15 to 24, with 29 per cent experiencing violence from their partner during the last 12 months. Compared to women over the age of 25, young women were five times more likely to be sexually assaulted, three times more likely to be physically assaulted and almost three times as likely to be psychologically abused.
Education 71% of women experiencing domestic abuse have a university or college degree/diploma.
Employment 70% of the Canadian women who report having experienced spousal violence are employed.
Disability Women living with physical and cognitive impairments experience violence two to three times more often than women living without impairments. 60% of women with a disability experience some form of violence.

We invite all readers to examine our online resources which can be helpful for addressing this urgent concern.  An introductory podcast to RESTORE: Ending Violence Against Women hosted and created by Cath MacKeil and Carol Penner, was announced in December 2019. Go to https://wicc.org/restore/ to explore all related materials. To watch the podcast, go to https://wicc.org/resources/ending-violence-links/

Chart Sources:  Statistics Canada 2018; Homicide in Canada – Statistics Canada 2014; “New report details (added) grim realities homeless women face” – June 2020; “The Facts about Gender-Based Violence” – canadianwomen.org. For assistance on how to access sources, email communications@wicc.org.


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