Photography by Vjosa Isai
Friday marked the 24th anniversary of the Montreal Massacre and on college campuses across the country, the day is one of the darkest in Canadian history. On Dec. 6 1989 Marc Lépine shot and killed 14 women at École Polytechnique before killing himself.
“The impacts of this day are very much a real part of every day lived experiences, ” said Ann Whiteside, director of Discrimination and Harassment Prevention Services at Ryerson University. She spoke at a candle light vigil in the university’s quadrangle. “We all share a responsibility to end violence. We as individuals need to make a difference by speaking out and demanding change.”
Twenty four years later, thousands of women in Canada are victims of violence at the hands of their partners every year — a statistic that is two and half times higher for Aboriginal women, according to a report by Statistics Canada in 2011. Many women don’t report these crimes at all. Activists continue to speak out against the introduction of Bill C-19 and the destruction of the long-gun registry, and organizations like the White Ribbon Campaign are working to teach young men and boys about ending violence against women.
Vjosa Isai captured some of the memorials and discussions that happened last week at Ryerson and the University of Toronto St. George. M
We remember: Geneviève Bergeron, Helene Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Haviernick, Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier,Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault, Annie Turcotte