YWCA Hamilton marks Victims and Survivors of Crime Week
Everyone deserves to feel safe in their community, workplace, neighbourhood, and home.
But for many – particularly women, Indigenous and racialized people, and members of the Two Spirit LGTBQIA+ community – every day brings the threat of violence.
This week marks Victims and Survivors of Crime Week, a national week of advocacy dedicated to raising awareness about the issues facing survivors of crime, and the services, assistance and laws in place to help victims and their families.
At YWCA Hamilton, we are dedicated to serving survivors of crime, particularly survivors of gender-based violence and hate. We know that the pain and trauma inflicted by violence can have long-term impacts on survivors, and that those experiencing violence often aren’t aware of the supports and services available to help them heal.
Gender-based violence, homophobia, and racism remain a global concern, despite decades of work, education, and advocacy. We know that not all violence is acknowledged or responded to equally. Some survivors of violence go unrecognized, unheard, and unanswered.
Last year, 184 women and girls were violently killed in Canada; a devastating increase of the 173 lives lost the year prior. In Hamilton and Halton, women, girls, Two Spirit and LGBTQIA+ people experience violence at higher rates than anyone else in our Hamilton and Halton communities.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, Two-Spirit and LGBTQIA+ people experience stigma and discrimination across their life spans, and are often targets of sexual and physical assault, harassment and hate crimes.
Indigenous women and girls are 12 times more likely to be murdered or missing than any other women in Canada, and 16 times more likely than white women. Six in ten Indigenous women have experienced some form of intimate partner violence in their lifetimes.
YWCA Hamilton offers a range of programs, services, and supports for survivors of violence. We have experience working with survivors of violence from a variety of marginalized communities, including newcomers, racialized and Indigenous women and families, women experiencing poverty and homelessness, women experiencing mental health issues, women experiencing addiction, women with disabilities, families experiencing separation/crisis, and women and families involved with the justice system.
Our services range from providing emergency drop-in shelter, longer-term transitional housing for women and families, legal support, counselling, emergency funding, supervised visitation for children, employment programing, and community-building for marginalized groups.
YWCA Hamilton is committed to walking alongside survivors of crime at every step of their journey – and to working to stop gender-based violence, hate, and homophia.