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Open Letter of Invitation to the 2014 Gathering of Men Standing up against Violence towards Aboriginal Women and Children
This letter is a call to action and an open invitation for our brothers, uncles, fathers, grandfathers, and sons to come together and strengthen our campaign to end violence against women and children.
On Thursday, February 13th, 2014 from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal men will meet at the Hotel Grand Pacific in Victoria to stand up for Aboriginal women and children and to speak out against all forms of violence towards them. You are invited to attend this gathering.
As part of this day of action we are also inviting Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal men across the country to take part in a national One-Day Fast. The purpose of not eating food or drinking water for one day is to honor the women and children in our lives, to strengthen our resolve, and to connect with men across Canada in our commitment to end the violence towards women and children in our communities. We are inviting men across the country to commit to a one-day Fast and to indicate your participation and support by writing your name on the Moose Hide Campaign website at: www.moosehidecampaign.ca.
Aboriginal women are three times more likely to experience domestic violence than non-Aboriginal women, and three times more likely than non-Aboriginal women to be killed by someone they know. Too many of our wives, daughters, sisters, aunties, mothers, grandmothers are not safe in their own home. Too many have been murdered or are missing. It is time for us to change this.
This cycle of violence came from residential schools, racism against our Peoples, and colonization. It was never in our culture to do violence to the women and children in our families and communities, it was always our responsibility to protect them.
Many efforts, projects, and strategies are now under-way throughout the country to change this reality, but we can and need to do more. Silence is not good enough, and simply being a non-abuser is not good enough. We must speak up and take action, and we need to support each other as Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal men.
The Gathering of Men – Standing up against Violence towards Aboriginal Women and Children, will take place on Thursday, February 13th from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at the Hotel Grand Pacific. At 12:30 pm we will walk to the BC Legislature and hold a Press Conference to speak out publicly against violence towards Aboriginal women and children, and to commit ourselves to action.
This invitation is being extended to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal males of all ages in BC First Nations communities, Aboriginal Friendship Centres, colleges and universities, Provincial and Federal government offices, RCMP and municipal police forces, and other Aboriginal organizations. We also extend a warm welcome to our non-Aboriginal brothers who want to stand with us and work together to achieve this vision.
Women are also welcome to attend as witnesses. This is a healing journey that we will walk together.
Please share this invitation and spread the word.
For further information, please contact Paul Lacerte at 250-388-5522 or e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or Jeannette MacInnis at 250-388-5522 or e-mail at: email@example.com
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