Skip to main content

Have your say: How do we confront violence against women, at home and abroad?

Craig and Marc Kielburger founded Free The Children and Me to We. Their biweekly Brain Storm column taps experts and readers for solutions to social issues.

The horrific gang rape and death of a young woman in New Delhi last month has awoken India's citizens to a deeply rooted social illness. Hopefully it has also drawn the world's attention to a global pandemic that takes many forms, and remains all too present in virtually every society.

The United Nations estimates that women between the ages of 15 and 44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer. We can't be complacent here in Canada, where it's estimated that 50 per cent of Canadian women will experience physical or sexual abuse in their lifetime.

Story continues below advertisement

In India, women have taken their outrage to the streets in an extraordinary campaign to modernize laws and attitudes. Expressions of anger and solidarity have come from around the world, but most observers agree that more is needed to combat such an appalling and intractable problem.

This week's question: What can we do to address violence against women, at home and in countries far away?

The experts:

Vineeta Srivastava, lecturer, Udaipur School of Social Work

"In India, women are fighting for equality. We need the international community to pressure the Indian government to create laws and machinery that provide a safe and dignified environment for women. Canadians should demand that their government impose these conditions before they enter into any agreement, whether business or otherwise, with India."

Afshan Khan, CEO, Women for Women International

"In addition to ending impunity for those who perpetrate violence against women, we must raise our voices in support of women survivors, encourage women's economic and political participation to give them greater standing in society, and proactively engage men as allies in changing the norms and attitudes towards women that lead to violence."

Story continues below advertisement

Beverley Wybrow, president and CEO, Canadian Women's Foundation

"Ending violence against women in Canada requires public education, violence prevention programs and a strong criminal justice response. Ask your elected representatives what they are doing to end violence by these means."

Have your say in the comment section.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter