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For immediate release
Kahnawake, April 23 2008 – Quebec Native Women, together with the Joint Working Group on the Well‐Being of our Nations is launching a vast Awareness Campaign Against Family Violence on May 14 th 2008.
Conjugal violence in the context of First Nations peoples is unfortunately, still today, a taboo subject even though it affects men, women and children in our communities. Thanks to this campaign, we look forward to sensitizing First Nations peoples in Quebec to this important social problem as well as inspire members of our communities to break this destructive cycle that is violence.The level of violence in Aboriginal communities actually is the most pervasive social problem amongst Aboriginal populations. Our communities are confronted by seriously violent situations, which notably affect the women and the children. The families, roots of basic socialization, have known major transformations over the last centuries and many have been torn by alcohol, drug abuse and all kinds of abuses, causes and consequences of violence.
The challenge against violence to Aboriginal women is complicated by the legal and judicial system that applies to them. Aboriginal women are marginalized by the current federal law that has left profound wounds in our aboriginal communities. Although, in Quebec, services and programs are offered to victims of criminal acts, the Quebec northern regions still do not receive such services and in the regions that they are, the services do not take into account Aboriginal women’s realities and distinct needs.
QNW and the Joint Working Group on the Well‐Being of our Nations act by launching this Awareness Campaign and draw on a strong and vibrant community spokeswoman, Sheila Swasson. In 2006, Sheila Swasson crossed Canada by bicycle with Aboriginal Women on the Move to mobilize public opinion on family violence. As well, Sheila Swasson is vice‐president of Quebec Native Women.
The event will be held on May 14 th at 2:00 pm at:
Hôtel‐musée des Premières Nations
5, Place de la Rencontre « Ekionkiestha »
Founded in 1974, Quebec Native Women Inc. (QNW), a non‐profit organization, represents women from the First Nations in Quebec and Aboriginal women living in urban areas. QNW advocates on behalf of the Rights of Aboriginal women and their families.
The Joint Working Group on the Well‐Being of our Nations ensures an active participation of all partners involved in violence issues and the sensitization of Aboriginal communities to promote non‐violence through their organization or association. Its mission is to work collaboratively in order to enhance the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellness of First Nations, their families and the Aboriginal communities of Quebec.
For more info, please contact:
Aurélie Arnaud, Communications Officer
(450) 632‐0088, #227
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