Toronto – November 22, 2023– Gender-based violence remains a daily threat to women, two spirit, trans, non-binary and gender nonconforming people in Canada. This week, UFCW Canada commemorates the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on November 25, and the start of 16 globally recognized days of activism to end gender-based violence. Right now and every day workers are saying #NeverAgain: End Gender-Based Violence at Work.
16 Days of Activism 2023
For the past three decades during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, individuals and groups around the world have called for the prevention and elimination of all forms of gender-based violence against women and girls. These 16 days begin with the International Day to Eliminate Violence Against Women on November 25 and end on Human Rights Day on December 10.
In Canada, December 6th is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, mainly marked with vigils and events to commemorate the 14 lives lost at Montréal’s École Polytechnique in 1989, as well as lives lost to femicide and gender-based violence through the year.
National Survey on Harassment and Violence at Work
In 2020, the CLC and researchers from the University of Western Ontario and the University of Toronto launched the first National Survey on Harassment and Violence at Work. The results showed that:
7 in 10 workers have experienced a form of harassment and violence at work.
Nearly 1 in 2 workers have experienced sexual harassment and violence in the last two years.
Third-parties (such as customers, clients, and patients) and co-workers were the two most commonly reported perpetrators.
70% of workers who experienced harassment and violence had to miss work because of the negative effects.
88% of workers who experienced harassment and violence were “transferred, suspended, fired, or lost a shift” due to the harassment and violence.
International Labour Organization Convention no. 190 acknowledges the universal right to a world of work free from violence and harassment and established a clear framework for ending it. Unions and advocates across Canada are calling on the government to fully ratify and implement C-190.
2023 Survey on Harassment in the Workplace
As part of the 16 Days of Activism, UFCW Canada is asking for workers to participate in a survey on harassment in the workplace. Employers are responsible for providing safe workplaces that are free of sexual harassment, harassment, violence and threat of violence. The stress of the pandemic often aggravated workplace settings, specifically those dealing with the public.