10 December 2015

YWCA Canberra is calling on Canberrans to join women’s groups in a rally on the lawns of Parliament House this Friday, to commemorate the lives of women who have died so far this year as a result of gender-based violence.

Labor Member for Fraser, Andrew Leigh, will join YWCA Canberra Executive Director Frances Crimmins, to speak at the rally on the topic of what more can be done to eliminate the scourge of domestic violence from our communities.

In partnership with the Domestic Violence Crisis Service, Toora Women Inc., Doris Women’s Refuge and Beryl Women Inc., YWCA Canberra is calling on women and men to assemble on the lawns of Parliament House from 12pm – 2pm.

There will be a moment of silence for each woman who has lost her life as a result of violence this year.

In addition, there will be five key requests for action:

  • Adequate resourcing to provide access to respectful relationships education for all young people in Australia.
  • Better resourcing for frontline services
  • Access to gender-aware crisis and other housing support for women escaping domestic violence
  • Ensure specialist women’s legal services have access to adequate and ongoing funding to provide support to women fleeing domestic violence.
  • That funding for domestic violence is responsive to the needs of diverse and marginalised groups.

Ms Crimmins said while recent government initiatives to address domestic violence were welcomed, governments now needed to look at how to meet the diverse needs of women experiencing violence.

“Women and children need appropriately-funded frontline services that take into account their financial, physical and emotional needs,” Ms Crimmins said.

“Services must provide for diversity, including cultural and linguistic diversity, gender diversity, and women with disabilities.”

Ms Crimmins said government responses would not be enough until gendered violence is eliminated.

“Even one woman dying at the hands of an intimate partner or former partner is too many. This simply should not happen,” Ms Crimmins said.

The rally is part of YWCA Canberra’s campaign supporting the global 16 Days of Activism to End Gender-Based Violence.

In addition to Friday’s rally, YWCA Canberra has hosted a screening of the documentary Call Me Dad, followed by an expert panel discussion; and Ms Crimmins last week called on ACT businesses to introduce paid Domestic Violence Leave, as a practical and meaningful way for employers to support employees experiencing violence.

YWCA Canberra has also coordinated a social media campaign using the #16 Days hashtag.

Note: Coalition leaders have also been invited to take part in Friday’s rally.
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Download MEDIA RELEASE – Show of respect by women’s groups at Parliament House for women killed by gendered violence

Frances Crimmins is available for interview.

Media contact: Karan Gabriel 0429 210 881

Follow the 16 Days on social media: #16Days

About the 16 Days of Activism to End Gender-Based Violence: The 16 Days of Activism to End Gender-Based Violence is a global campaign from 25 November – 10 December. It is to raise awareness about violence against women and its impact on a women’s physical, psychological, social and spiritual wellbeing.

The 16 Days begin on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (also White Ribbon Day) and end on International Human Rights Day. These two dates highlight that violence against women is a human rights abuse.

During the 16 Days, activists around the world will use the campaign to further raise awareness about the prevalence and devastating impact of gender violence, challenge policy and practice that allow women to be targeted for acts of violence, and demand that violence against women be recognised as an abuse of human rights.

About YWCA Canberra: YWCA Canberra is a feminist, not-for-profit community organisation that has been providing community services and representing women’s issues in the Canberra community since its establishment in 1929. YWCA Canberra employs more than 300 staff across the ACT, and delivers 30 quality programs in children’s services, community development, housing, youth services, women’s leadership, advocacy, and training. Represented in 122 countries, the YWCA has a global reach of 25 million women and girls. As part of this international movement, YWCA Canberra works for a world where reconciliation, justice, peace, health, human dignity, freedom and care for the environment are promoted and sustained through women’s leadership. For more information visit:

Follow YWCA Canberra on social media:

Twitter: @YWCACanberra
Instagram: @YWCACanberra
Flickr: YWCA Canberra


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