Everyone can help prevent family violence
Supporting Island families
During Family Violence Prevention Week (February 11-17), Islanders can learn how they – as family, friends, co-workers, or even strangers – can help to prevent family violence.
Communities across Prince Edward Island are marking the week by holding walks in silence, information presentations, and family activities to help raise awareness of family violence. For example, Wednesday, February 14 is Wear Purple Day in Prince Edward Island; a full schedule of activities can be found at www.stopfamilyviolence.pe.ca.
“Everyone has a role to play to prevent and respond to abuse in our community,” Premier Wade MacLauchlan said. “There are many ways to help when we see or suspect abuse is occurring. This year, Family Violence Prevention Week focuses on our collective responsibility to help prevent family violence and provides tools and resources that can help.”
Here are some ways to support someone in an abusive or violent relationship:
- look for “red flags” that may indicate someone is being abused, such as a partner constantly checking up on them or trying keep them away from family and friends (visit www.stopfamilyviolence.pe.ca for more information);
- speak to the person privately and letting them know you are willing to listen and help if you are worried about them;
- provide the person with information on community resources and encouraging them to seek protection; and
- call 9-1-1 if you think someone you know is in danger.
“Even if we are not experiencing violence ourselves, there are actions – big and small -- we as bystanders can take that could help save a life,” said Ann Sherman, chair of the Premier’s Action Committee on Family Violence Prevention. “I encourage all Islanders to learn more about their role in preventing family violence and to support the victims of family violence by taking part in the many activities throughout the week.”
Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy and Status of Women
Whether we are a neighbour, co-worker, friend or family member of someone experiencing violence, we all have a role to play in ending family violence.
Businesses have a role to play as well. New resources have been created to help businesses respond to family violence that happens in a workplace setting.
Even if we are not using violence or experiencing violence ourselves, there are actions we can take. Action by bystanders can make a difference.
Wednesday, February 14 is Wear Purple Day in Prince Edward Island. Islanders are encouraged to wear purple:
- To raise awareness of Family Violence Prevention Week;
- To remember victims of violence and their families; and
- To show that violence in any relationship is not acceptable.
Still not sure how to respond? There are professionals who can help.
- PEI Family Violence Prevention Services: 1-800-240-9894
- Victim Services: 902-368-4582 (Charlottetown), 902-888-8218 (Summerside)
- PEI Rape and Sexual Assault Centre: 1-888-368-8055
- Chief Mary Bernard Memorial Women’s Shelter: 1-855-297-2332
If you witness or suspect child abuse, it is mandatory to report it to the Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-341-6868.
If you suspect abuse or neglect of an older person, contact Adult Protection at 902-892-4790.