On Friday Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality announced up to $50 Million in funding to support organizations providing supports and services to those experiencing gender-based violence.
This was part of the recent Speech from the Throne where the Government of Canada committed to accelerate investments in shelters and transition housing to ensure anyone facing gender-based violence has a safe place to turn.
“COVID-19 is a crisis unlike any other and it has laid bare the cracks in our support systems. This crises has thrown into sharp focus the needs of organizations serving women and children who are fleeing violence. No one should be left without a place to turn at this difficult time and our government have moved swiftly to provide $100 million to these critical front-line organizations, ensuring their doors can remain open and they can continue their lifesaving work.” Monsef said.
According to the release this funding includes: Up to $10 million for women’s shelters and sexual assault centres to help them continue to provide their critical services safely; up to $10 million to support organizations providing services related to gender-based violence to Indigenous people off-reserve; and up to $30 million for other women’s organizations to support the delivery of GBV supports, to help combat the spread of COVID, and to address the increased demand for services.
The announcement builds on previous emergency funding provided to women’s shelters, sexual assault centres and other organizations providing gender-based violence services to ensure continuity of services at this challenging time.
This brings the total emergency funding provided to GBV organizations to $100 million. Through the first $50 million, over 1,000 organizations across the country received much-needed funding that helped ensure they could keep their doors open to those in need. Organizations used the funding to enhance cleaning and safety procedures, hire additional staff to manage additional workload, and purchase equipment to help them deliver their services remotely.
In response to the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, the Government is also working with Indigenous partners, and provinces and territories, to develop and launch a National Action Plan to address violence against Indigenous women, girls and Two-Spirit and LGBTQ people.
There has also been increased funding to grow and strengthen the women’s movement. Between 2015 and 2019, federal support to women’s and equality-seeking organizations increased five-fold, compared to the previous five years. This fiscal year WAGE will make available over $100 million available to these organizations to ensure they can continue their important work, helping to build a stronger, more inclusive Canada. Six million Canadians benefit from the work of these organizations every year.