Woman or girl killed every 2.5 days in Cda in 2018, inaugural report finds


Nicole Thompson, the Canadian Press

Published Wednesday, January 30, 2019 12:44 EST

One woman or girl was killed every 2.5 days on average in Canada last year, according to an inaugural report on feminicide that argues that the issue must be better understood in order to reduce the number of murders.

The first annual report by the Canadian Observatory on Femicide for Justice and Accountability – entitled "CallItFemicide" – was released on Wednesday and meets a United Nations call for countries to better track the murders of women, Myrna Dawson said. , director of the observatory and professor at the University of Guelph.

"We really came back home how often this was happening when we were monitoring this on a daily basis," she said. "Women are still at greater risk of men they are intimate with or who they should be able to trust."

The purpose of the report, at least in part, is to recognize that the circumstances and motivations surrounding the violent deaths of women differ from those of men so that the femicide can be better understood and prevented.

"The context in which women and girls are killed is very different because they are more often killed by people they know, and this is different from the men who are most often killed by acquaintances and strangers," Dawson said. "Calling it what it is and recognizing the distinction underscores the fact that we need different types of prevention."

The report said 148 women and girls were killed in 133 incidents in 2018, with 140 people accused in their deaths. In 12 of the 133 incidents, no accused was identified. Some cases involve multiple defendants.

More than 90% of the accused were men.

In many cases, a police investigation is still ongoing, Dawson said, adding that investigators intend to follow cases through the justice system in the coming years to better understand the factors that affect each of them.

Statistics include a van attack that left eight women and two men dead in Toronto last year. The accused in this case, Alek Minassian, was charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted homicide. He is ready to stand trial in February 2020.

The women who died in the van attack are among the 21% allegedly killed in 2018 by a stranger. In contrast, 53 percent were reportedly killed by close partners, according to the report. Another 13 percent were reportedly killed by other male members of the family.

This includes the case of Krassimira Pejcinovski and her 13-year-old daughter, Venallia, allegedly murdered by Pejcinovski's eldest partner in May 2018. Her 15-year-old son, Roy, was also killed in the incident but is not on the list. The statistics.

Demographics and figures were taken from media reports of the deaths, the study found. Dawson said media information is more available and at least as accurate as information from official sources. But the report notes that in the years to come, as these cases progress in the judiciary, researchers look at court records to keep up with the updates.

Dawson said that there is some demographic data disproportionately represented in the statistics. For example, the report indicates that indigenous women represent only about 5% of the population but represent 36% of women and girls murdered by violence. Thirty-four percent of women and girls were killed in rural areas, where only 16% of the population lives, according to the report.

Understanding these issues is critical to preventing future femicides, said Julie Lalonde, a women's rights advocate and public educator.

For example, she noted, funding for sexual assault centers and shelters for women is distributed per capita in Ontario, putting women in sparsely populated areas at an even greater disadvantage.

"The argument is that there is less need (in rural areas)." Perhaps in terms of numbers, but you have a more complex need in rural communities that requires more resources because you have to travel long distances. people to flee, "said Lalonde.

She said statistics like those in the report also help reduce misconceptions about violence against women, such as the idea that women in abusive relationships should simply quit.

"We do not talk about things like criminal harassment or the fact that most women are killed after they leave or declare that they will leave a partner," she said. "We have to challenge all the myths and stereotypes that tell women that they are guilty."


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