The Standing Committee on The Status of Women Tables Its Report on The Systems of Shelters and Transition Houses Serving Women and Children Affected by Violence
Ottawa, May 01, 2019 –
The House of Commons Standing Committee on the Status of Women (the Committee) tabled its report entitled Surviving Abuse and Building Resilience—A Study of Canada’s Systems of Shelters and Transition Houses Serving Women and Children Affected by Violence today.
The Committee conducted this study with the understanding that the physical and psychological effects of violence are profound and long-lasting. Individuals affected by violence require access to safe housing and appropriate support services. The Committee recognizes that the persistence of violence against women and intimate partner violence is a barrier to achieving gender equality in Canada.
The Committee heard testimony from 36 organizations, seven individuals and five federal departments, and received 53 written briefs from individuals and organizations between October and December 2018. In its report, the Committee provides an overview of the system of shelters and transition houses serving women and children affected by violence. In addition, it examines issues related to:
- funding for shelters and transition houses serving women and children affected by violence;
- challenges facing diverse groups of women and children in accessing shelter and transition houses’ services;
- women’s access to services as they leave shelters; and
- preventing violence against women and intimate partner violence.
In its report, the Committee makes 20 recommendations to provide guidance to the Government of Canada on measures that could be implemented to improve access to beds and appropriate services in shelters and transition houses serving women and children affected by violence. The main goals of the Committee’s recommendations are to:
- adress the gap between supply of and demand for space in shelters and transition houses in Canada serving women and children experiencing violence;
- ensure that women and children living in urban, rural and remote communities experiencing violence, including Indigenous women, have access to comparable levels of services in shelters and transition houses across Canada that meet their specific needs; and
- increase women’s access to safe and affordable housing and appropriate supports.
The report can be consulted on the Committee’s web page on the Parliament of Canada website.
The Standing Committee on the Status of Women has 11 members. It is chaired by Karen Vecchio (Elgin — Middlesex — London) and co-chaired by Salma Zahid (Scarborough Centre) and Irene Mathyssen (London — Fanshawe). The other members of the Committee are Rachel Bendayan (Outremont), Bob Bratina (Hamilton East — Stoney Creek), Terry Duguid (Winnipeg South)*, Rachael Harder (Lethbridge), Emmanuella Lambropoulos (Saint-Laurent), the Hon. K. Kellie Leitch (Simcoe — Grey), Eva Nassif (Vimy) and Sonia Sidhu (Brampton South).
* Non-voting member pursuant to Standing Order 104(5).
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For more information, please contact:
Kenza Gamassi, Clerk of the Standing Committee on the Status of Women