Statement By The Prime Minister Harper On The National Day Of Remembrance And Action On Violence Against
December 06, 2021
OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued the following statement today on the occasion of Canada’s National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women 2007, marking the 18th anniversary of the murder of 14 young women at l’École polytechnique de Montréal.

“On December 6, 1989, 14 young, bright, ambitious students at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal were murdered by a hate-filled gunman. The scale of the slaughter was shocking, but even more horrifying was the killer’s motive: Every one of the victims was a woman.

As we mark this tragic anniversary let us rededicate ourselves to preventing and eliminating violence against women, and to making our communities safer for all of us.

The Montreal Massacre was a monstrous insult to our core Canadian values. We believe fundamentally in the equality of men and women, and we believe all Canadians should be able to live in our country without fear of crime.

During the last two years, our Government has pursued a comprehensive set of criminal justice reforms to protect these essential characteristics of Canadian society.

These changes will help protect women from dangerous sexual offenders and help protect young girls from sexual predators. They will also impose tougher sentences and bail requirements on people who commit serious gun crimes. And they will end house arrest for serious violent crimes, such as sexual assault.

But the quest for safe streets and communities will not be achieved through criminal justice reform alone. That’s why our Government is taking action to address poverty, which disproportionately burdens single mothers and their children, and put them at higher risk of criminal victimization.

We have also initiated measures to address the unequal treatment of aboriginal women. They deserve the same matrimonial property rights and human rights protections that apply to all other Canadian women.

And we have boosted funding for the Women’s Program of Status of Women Canada, which supports programs across the country that seek to eliminate violence against girls and women.

On this day of Remembrance and Action let us honour the memory of the Montreal women who were murdered by misogyny by working together to protect the lives, dignity and equality of all women.”

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