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Category: Guest bloggers

“I Don’t Think You’ll Understand” – How Music Can Help Us End Violence

Woman with dandelionMusic is powerful. It’s a medium like no other – thoughts, feelings and raw emotions laced with rhythms and chord progressions that keep the message flowing.

Music for so many is an escape. It provides a chance to reflect on personal events that happen in life and an opportunity to relate to another human being. Who hasn’t said at one point “hey, that line says exactly how I feel right now…”

But what happens when that line brings to light an experience that you’ve worked hard to forget? Or gives you chilling insight into someone else’s pain?

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What is “Rape Culture” Anyway?

Scales of justiceI wrote a blog post recently about a man getting in my space and creeping me out in an elevator, and posted the link to my Facebook page. I couldn’t believe the chorus of voices that rose up in the comments to defend him, and defend men in general, as though I had somehow accused them all. There were even comments about how my fearful attitude is partly responsible for “attracting these types of situations”.

It blew my mind how quickly people jumped to the man’s defense, and also questioned my read of the situation, as though they, people who were not present, somehow understood what happened better than I did.

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Why We Ask – Teaching Consent

Couple sitting in parkThis post was originally published on the Klinic’s blog.

This evening I am again sitting in on a SERC youth session at Peaceful Village, this time at a south end Winnipeg high school. As I mentioned in a previous post, Peaceful Village offers programming that supports integration and literacy for newcomer families and youth, and our partnership with them is funded by the Canadian Women’s Foundation. To learn more please read my first blog on this partnership, Healthy Relationships Start Young.

This is week 9 of the 12 week session and Bre, one of our Sexuality & Reproductive Health Facilitators, invited me to attend because she is so impressed by the thoughtfulness and exuberance of this unique group. In fact, she tells me, last week one of the students started a discussion on the idealization of masculinity and how it affects male youth–this is clearly a young man after my own heart.  Today we are talking about consent.

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10 Reasons Violence Against Women is Still a Problem in Canada

Woman with striped t-shirtIn May, a wildfire engulfed Fort McMurray, Alberta, and thousands of people were evacuated as the flames scorched forests and homes in its path. In response, people from coast to coast demonstrated the kindness Canadians are famous for.

The crisis came at a difficult time in Alberta—the province has been struggling to deal with a recession for months. As the fire died down, another disturbing story emerged: domestic violence has been on the rise in Calgary.

Police believe that the stress of the province’s economic slump and subsequent job loss has exacerbated the problem. Alarmingly, research also shows that violence between partners can increase following a natural disaster. After Hurricane Katrina, violence between partners rose by 98%. In unstable conditions, shelters may be forced to close, making women increasingly vulnerable to violence.

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