PRESS RELEASE: DECEMBER 05, 2008

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On December 6, Remember Montreal and More

Violence is seldom warranted. In a perfect world, it simply would not exist.

But in our imperfect world, force is sometimes needed to quash a greater evil. For instance, while there are questions about whether they should be involved, Canadian forces in Afghanistan are there on a noble mission, to stop the horrors of a fanatical regime run amok. Whether that can be accomplished remains an uncertain objective, but the intent of the mission is unquestionable.

Yet we cannot ignore the intrinsic hatred and injustice against which we all fight, particularly recollected each December 6 when we recognize Canada’s National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.

On that day in 1989, a deranged gunman walked into a Montreal engineering school, dismissed the male students, and slaughtered 14 women simply because they were women. He shouted, "I hate feminists!" as he opened fire.

Back to Afghanistan, or, more specifically, Kandahar. Last month, on November 14, Taliban thugs attacked groups of young women students on their way to school, spraying acid in their faces, because they were women trying to get an education. Simply because they were women. They may overcome this adversity in their lives, but the physical and emotional scars will be carried forever.

This is just one, but most recent, example of the ways women are threatened and punished for merely trying to take their roles in society. December 6 serves as a reminder that women constantly face obstacles to their full participation in society and the workforce, often with alarming results. From violence, from unequal treatment, from any inequity, women are still not treated fairly. Our ongoing mission must be to correct that.

In solidarity,
Wayne Hanley
National President

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