For feminists today, there is a before and after the Montreal massacre.
—Lee Lakeman, March 1990
Today, December 6, 2007, I remember those women murdered on December 6, 1989, who dared to study engineering:
Geneviève Bergeron, Hélène Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Haviernick, Barbara Klucznik Widajewicz, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault, Annie Turcotte
I also remember the 62 wives killed last year in Canada and the 500 Aboriginal women missing from Canada. I remember all women, the world over, impacted by violent acts.
I mourn these realities. I mourn for a country that removes the word “equality” from its mandate to support the actions of women’s organizations working for change. I mourn for a world that is at war against half its population.
And I work for change, by simply telling you, dear reader, how one person can make a difference. A former Executive Director at the Provincial Association of Transition Houses in Saskatchewan (PATHS) as part of her paid work, developed an initiative to help women find escape support in their local communities. Since then, she has left that job, but not the work which has broadened from a Saskatchewan initiative to the world-wide Hot Peach Pages, “an international directory of abuse hotlines, shelters, refuges, crisis centres and women’s organizations, plus domestic violence information in over 75 languages.”
Now I will light a candle and place it in my front room window as my personal symbol to the world and my community.
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(Courtesy Vancouver Rape Relief Shelter)