Dec. 4, 2014

Support women in telling their stories of abuse

According to the United Nations, there are one billion people with disabilities in the world, more than half of which are women, making them the largest minority group on the planet. And yet this group remains one of the poorest and most vulnerable.

For close to 30 years, DAWN-RAFH Canada has responded to the needs of Canadian women with disabilities and Deaf women by advocating for their advancement and full economic and social inclusion.

However, vulnerability to violence and abuse remains one of the biggest challenges facing women with disabilities.

Studies have shown that 40% to 60% of women with disabilities will experience some form of violence in their lives. And women are less likely to report because they may not be aware of available service or may have trouble making contact with them. As well they may fear losing their financial security or even being institutionalized. Finally, women fear not being believed or been seen as credible by the very institutions that are meant to help them.

In February 2012 the Supreme Court of Canada announced a landmark decision in a court case called “D.A.I.”, in which it recognized the right of people with disabilities to be believed when they report sexual assault and abuse.

This December 3, International Day of Persons with Disabilities we call on our allies to support women with disabilities and Deaf women in telling their stories of violence and abuse, as a way to claim their right to speak, to be heard and to be believed.


Click here to find out more about our social media campaign “We Can Tell and We Will Tell!”


A message from Bonnie Brayton,

National Executive Director