Statistics Canada reports that half of all women in Canada have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence after the age of 16. We see a young fair-haired girl seated with her hands and arms covering up her face. Her large shadow covers much of a grey wall behind her.

Statistics Canada reports that half of all women in Canada have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence after the age of 16.
Photo Credit: cbc.ca

A new step is taken in drive to protect women from violent assaults

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A new Safety Information System to help women and young people who are victims of sexual assault will be launched this fall in Toronto.

The online system will provide quick alerts and updates on sexual assaults throughout the city as well as provide the chance to talk about ways to keep victims safe while police pursue the suspected attacker.

Three women embrace after laying flowers in front of École Polytechnique​ in Montreal, where a gunman killed 14 women on Dec. 6, 1989. All three are standing at the right of the picture. All are wearing red winter coats. In the background is the school building itself. Across its windows is written of École Polytechnique​ de Montreal. In the front of the building to the left, flowers have been laid.
Three women embrace after laying flowers in front of École Polytechnique​ in Montreal, where a gunman killed 14 women on Dec. 6, 1989. ©  Shaney Komulainen

The Safety Information System is being set up by the non-profit organization METRAC, which focuses on violence against women. METRAC has spent three years developing the project.

Violence against women statistics are shocking. The World Health Organization estimates that 23 per cent of women in North America experience physical or sexual violence from a partner or sexual violence from a non-partner.

According to Statistics Canada, half of all women in Canada have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence before the age of 16.

Andrea Gunraj is a communications specialist with METRAC. She joined RCI by phone from her office in Toronto.

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