The Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity, an academic research centre housed at Providence Health Care along with the UBC Youth Sexual Health Team, is to receive $1 million from the federal government to test and evaluate a survivor-centric and trauma-informed approach to supporting criminalized women survivors of gender-based violence (GBV). The project will provide feedback and valuable information on how best to improve services and supports to women who are struggling to find a way to get the help they need to reclaim their lives and recover.
The investment is meant to help survivors that have been underserved, including Indigenous women and their communities, children and youth, ethno-cultural and newcomer women, refugees or non-status, LGBTQ2 communities and gender non-binary people and women living with disabilities.
Dr. Hedy Fry, member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, made the announcement on behalf of Maryam Monsef, minister of international development and minister for women and gender equality, on June 25, 2019.
“This funding envelope was developed in partnership with leaders from the women’s sector, whose advice continues to inform Canada’s first Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence,” Monsef said in a release. “Gender-based violence must not be tolerated, and we will continue to work with survivors, community partners, the private sector and other orders of government to end GBV in all of its forms.”
Fry is pleased the government is providing this funding.
“These funds will increase the capacity of eligible women’s organizations, Indigenous organizations that serve women and women’s groups to advance gender equality and provide essential services for women in need,” she said. “It’s crucial that we have institutions in B.C. that offer peer support, survivor-centric and trauma-informed approaches when helping cis and trans women survivors of gender-based violence.”
Dr. Kate Shannon, executive director of the centre, Canada Research Chair in Gender Equity, Sexual Health and Global Policy, and a professor of medicine at UBC, said the investment will have a powerful impact.
Today’s announcement will help advance gender equity by supporting criminalized women and gender-diverse survivors of gender-based violence to access social, health and legal supports to help them reclaim their lives.
Canada Research Chair in Gender Equity, Sexual Health and Global Policy
“Today’s announcement will help advance gender equity by supporting criminalized women and gender-diverse survivors of gender-based violence to access social, health and legal supports to help them reclaim their lives,” she said. “Working closely with our community partners, this project aims to work alongside women and gender-diverse people’s lived experience in developing best practices in intersecting trauma-informed supports and evidence-based policies that will affect change and agency in a gender-based violence response.”
The Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity formed in 2018 to address and advance gender and sexual health equity among marginalized and underserviced populations in B.C., Canada and globally. The centre has a strategic mandate of community-based research, policy and practice to reduce gender and sexual health inequities. Representatives of the centre are regular expert contributors and consultants at the national and international levels on gender and sexual health-care guidelines related to gender health equity, violence and sexual and reproductive health.
Gender-based violence can have lifelong impacts on an individual’s physical, mental, sexual and reproductive health. Additionally, the effects can be serious and costly. Annually, the economic impact of intimate partner violence and sexual assault is estimated to be over $12 billion.