Ontario is introducing legislation today that would help build a province where everyone is free from the threat of sexual violence and harassment, and would strengthen support for survivors.
As the MPP for Ottawa Centre I introduced a Private Member’s Bill, Escaping Domestic Violence Act, 2011 which would shorten the time it takes to end a tenancy agreement for people experiencing sexual or domestic violence, to make it easier for survivors to flee abuse. I’m proud that this legislation, informed by a victim of domestic violence and activists in our community, is now a part of the Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan.
The legislation would help deliver on commitments in It's Never Okay, the government's ground-breaking action plan to stop sexual violence and harassment. If passed, the Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan Act would make workplaces, campuses and communities safer and more responsive to the needs of survivors and to complaints about sexual violence and harassment. The Act would:
Ontario is supporting these priorities through a broad-based action plan that includes increased and stabilized funding to community-based sexual assault centres and hospital-based sexual assault and domestic violence treatment centres. The government is also running a province-wide public education campaign to promote a shift in attitudes and behaviours, and recently announced a $2.25 million Creative Engagement Fund to challenge rape culture through artistic projects.
Supporting survivors of sexual violence and creating a safer, more inclusive and more equitable province is part of the government's plan to build Ontario up. The plan includes investing in people's talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario's history, creating a dynamic, innovative environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.
“ I am very excited that this legislation includes my Private Member’s Bill, Escaping Domestic Violence Act, 2011, which was inspired by a victim of domestic violence in our community. Our plan strengthens supports for survivors and makes the safety of women in Ottawa and around the province a priority.”
- Yasir Naqvi
MPP, Ottawa Centre
" Many women in Ontario do not feel safe, and that is unacceptable. These legislative proposals would put the strength of the law behind our commitment to make communities, schools, and workplaces safer, and that is an important part of our roadmap to end sexual violence and harassment in this province."
- Kathleen Wynne
Premier of Ontario
" We are committed to creating a province where all Ontarians feel secure from the threat of sexual violence and harassment. This legislation, if passed, would give survivors the supports they need while keeping our campuses, workplaces and communities safe."
- Tracy MacCharles
Minister Responsible for Women’s Issues
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