News Release Archive

N.S. STATUS OF WOMEN--Female Victims of Violence Remembered
The Nova Scotia flag at Province House flies at half-mast today
and Saturday in remembrance of all Canadian women who have been
victims of violence.

At the flag-lowering this morning, Premier Russell MacLellan
said: "This ceremony serves to remind us that misguided anger
toward women is still out there and we must work tirelessly
toward the eventual elimination of violence against women."

Francene Cosman, Minister Responsible for the Status of Women,
said: "Today is a day when we acknowledge that women everywhere
are still subjected to violence, even death, because they are
women. But it's also a day when we reflect upon those actions and
plans we can take to make violence against women a thing of the

December 6 was declared an annual national day of remembrance and
action on violence against women after 14 women were gunned down
at the engineering school of the Ecole Polytechnique in Montreal
in 1989.

Ms. Cosman pointed to the strides Nova Scotia has made in the
past year, including a decision to review laws and policies on
criminal harassment (stalking) and an improved process for the
acquisition of peace bonds. She also said training of some 3,000
Justice workers was completed this year to better equip them to
implement the government's pro-arrest, pro-prosecution policy in
cases of spousal assault.

Patricia Doyle-Bedwell, chair of the Nova Scotia Advisory Council
on the Status of Women, read the abused woman's Declaration of
Rights and said the advisory council will not cease in its
efforts to eliminate violence against women.

"This is a horrific societal problem; we can't just satisfy
ourselves with offering help to the abused and to the abuser,"
she said. "We must go further. We must stop violence before it

John Hamm, Leader of the Opposition, and MLA Eileen O'Connell,
attending on behalf of NDP Leader Robert Chisholm, also made
remarks to the group gathered for the ceremony.  

Since 1989, 44 Nova Scotia women have died violently, 35 at the
hands of men. Of these, 32 were having or had a relationship of
some kind with their killer. Three women did not know their

Of the 44 cases, eight killers have not been caught, and in only
one of the solved cases was the killer another female.

These figures mirror the national situation: about 72 per cent of
violent incidents committed against women across Canada are by
acquaintances and relatives.


Contact: Chris Hansen
         Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women

NOTE TO EDITORS: NOTE TO EDITORS: A fact sheet on violence
against women and the text of the Declaration of Rights for
Abused Women are available by e-mailing or
calling collect 902-424-4492.

ngr                 Dec. 5, 1997                 9:00 a.m.