Feds provide $50M for survivors of violence
Money to help support those who have experienced genderbased violence, reduce risk
HALIFAX — Forty days ago, a woman returned to her home on Nova Scotia’s We’koqma’q First Nation to find her 22year-old daughter, Cassidy Bernard — a new mother of infant twins — dead.
“Her daughter was murdered,” said Paula Marshall, executive director of the Mi’kmaq Legal Support Network. “Her five-and-a-half month old identical twin girls lay dehydrated in a crib beside her, very seriously ill.”
Marshall described the horrific scene at a funding announcement in Halifax Monday, where federal Status of Women Minister Maryam Monsef announced $50 million for programs aimed at gender-based violence.
Monsef said 60 projects across the country will receive up to $1 million each over five years to address gaps in support for underserved groups, including Indigenous women, LGBTQ communities, gender non-binary people and women in rural and remote areas.
Marshall pointed out that Indigenous women and girls are three times more likely to experience violence, a statistic illustrated by Bernard’s death.
She said African-nova Scotian women share many of the same struggles, and are overrepresented in the country’s jails.
More at thestar.com/canada