In recognition of the White Ribbon campaign

November 25 also marks the beginning of the annual White Ribbon campaign in Canada, and I am proud to stand here on behalf of the Liberal Party to recognize the White Ribbon campaign. It is one of the largest men-led anti-violence programs in the world and is run in parallel with the 12 Days to End Violence Against Women campaign. This year marks the 4th anniversary of White Ribbon Yukon, the group responsible for organizing the event.

Starting as a response to the École Polytechnique massacre on December 6, 1989 — 25 years ago, Mr. Speaker — the White Ribbon began to appear in the years following as a show of solidarity and to show opposition to violence against women. The campaign encourages men — especially young men — to pledge to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women and girls.

We need to ensure that our boys grow up to be caring and compassionate men who understand that there is absolutely no situation where abuse is okay. Citizens are encouraged to take part by wearing the white ribbon, taking the pledge to never commit violence against women or to volunteer to distribute the white ribbons.

The month of November is Woman Abuse Prevention Month. Let’s ensure that we continue the dialogue after November and continue to create an environment that is safe for all women to speak out. I absolutely agree with my colleague. I am, as well, a feminist. From one of the original courses that I took on the subject from one of Canada’s most renowned feminists, Dr. Clare Fawcett, said — and I quote: “You are a feminist if you believe that we are equal, but different.”