The Canadian Teachers’ Federation highlights the importance of safe and caring schools on National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women

December 04, 2009

Ottawa...  On the 20th anniversary of the killings at the Polytechnique in Montréal, the Canadian Teachers’ Federation (CTF) encourages teachers across Canada to remember and mourn the 14 young women and also to remind their members of Parliament that violence against women comes at a high price.

“Violence against women is a societal problem which affects not only women but also children and men,” explains CTF President Mary-Lou Donnelly.

“The federal government estimates the direct medical costs of violence against women at $1.1 billion per year, plus $4 billion a year for criminal justice, social services, and lost productivity.

“As teachers, we also see the emotional turmoil, learning effects and absenteeism in our classrooms when students have witnessed or have been victims of violence,” says the President. “One of our many roles as teachers is to educate all our students that violence has no place in society. To build a culture of peace, we must teach our girls to protect and empower themselves, foster empathy in all our students and help children resolve conflicts without violence.”

The CTF President encourages teachers to take part in the YWCA campaign by sending a rose to their MP:

CTF suggested resource:

Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that has shown dramatic effect in reducing levels of aggression among schoolchildren by raising social/emotional competence and increasing empathy.