National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women - A statement from President and Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Digvir Jayas, and Martha Mathurin Moe, Vice-Provost, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

This notice is from the archives of The Notice Board. Information contained in this notice was accurate at the time of publication but may no longer be so.

December 6 is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. Post-secondary institutions across Canada were forever changed on December 6, 1989, when the lives of 14 brilliant young women attending École Polytechnique in Montreal were lost to senseless violence. Targeted because they were women, their untimely deaths stood out as a shocking example of gender-based and sexual violence in Canada’s history.

Most recently, at the University of Waterloo, students, staff and faculty also experienced a hate motivated act. Sadly, this continues to demonstrate the urgent need to continue having difficult conversations and speaking out towards eliminating gender-based and sexual violence on our campuses.

Not only is it important on this day, but every Dec. 6 going forward, that we as an institution continue to tell the stories of the lives that were so cruelly cut short, and that we remember their names: Geneviève BergeronHélène ColganNathalie CroteauBarbara DaigneaultAnne-Marie EdwardMaud HaviernickBarbara Klucznik-WidajewiczMaryse LaganièreMaryse LeclairAnne-Marie LemaySonia PelletierMichèle RichardAnnie St-Arneault and Annie Turcotte.

The results of the recently launched provincial survey and the updated Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Prevention Policy demonstrate the University of Lethbridge’s commitment to listen, learn and act to create a safer campus for all. The research shows that many incidents of gender-based violence go unreported due to fear and stigma. If we can play one role in bringing an end to gender-based violence, perhaps it is reaching those victims by offering an environment that allows their voices to be heard and creates a space within which they feel safe.

As a post-secondary institution, ULethbridge must continue its work to disrupt, discuss and dismantle gender-based and sexual violence on our campuses, and be a leader within our communities. We must work to ensure all women and girls, regardless of their gender expression or gender diversity, feel safe, respected and empowered. All women, including Indigenous women and girls, 2SLGBTQ+, gender diverse individuals, and women living with disabilities, deserve the right to health, safety, education and justice.

In memory of the 14 lives lost on December 6, 1989, and the many others who have been impacted by gender-based violence, an online fireside chat webinar is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday and ULethbridge will lower its flags. The session, Navigating the complexities of Gender-based and Sexual Violence, is organized by the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Office, and features Dr. Lisa Starr, Dean of Education, Courtney Smith (BHSc ’19), ULethbridge’s Gender-Based and Sexual Violence Prevention Coordinator, and Katie DeLucia-Burk, Human Resources Project Assistant and Gender Inclusion Consultant and advocate. 

ULethbridge continues to support the mandatory sexual violence prevention education training for all students. For more information on this, visit the FAQ page.

We acknowledge that this event and day can be triggering to many, please reach out if you need support and connect with the Employee Family Assistance Program (faculty and staff). For students, please access assistance by contacting Counselling Services, the Iikaisskini Indigenous Student Centre, or connect with an Elder in Residence.

Dr. Digvir Jayas, OC, PhD, DSc, PEng, PAg, FRSC 
Blackfoot name: Ikkayiinnii (Fast Buffalo)
President and Vice-Chancellor 

Martha Mathurin Moe, BA, MEd
Blackfoot name: Aka-isam-o’too (Arrived a Long Time Ago)
Vice-Provost, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

For more resources, consider the following links:

Final Report on the National Inquiry of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls




Martha Mathurin Moe | |