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Orange Shirt Day – Canada’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Today is September 30th and we are supporting Orange Shirt Day by actively working to disrupt systems that affect the next seven generations. All Native American Nations are calling on the Pope to rescind the Doctrine of Discovery, as it was used to justify colonizing Indigenous lands. We ask that you donate to a IRS Society to support ongoing searches and survivors. In addition, we also ask that you stay engaged in decolonization efforts with Indigenous Peoples and the land we share today and everyday.

Below is a list of references to educate yourself & get involved!

Assembly of First Nations – Dismantling the Doctrine of Discovery

Indian Residential School Survivors Society

Indigenous Watchdog

Calls to Action Accountability: A Status Update on Reconciliation

Christopher Columbus and the Doctrine of Discovery – 5 Things to Know

Warrior Life by Pam Palmater


For Some, Staying Home is not Staying Safe

Over the past two weeks, I have been receiving calls from survivors, in fear of how the COVID-19 will inevitably lead to frustration in their partners, which in turn will inevitably lead to an escalation in violence directed towards her and or the children. (more…)


IPV Pilot Study

Dear Members,

Please consider taking approximately 10 minutes to help with our research:

A recent Canadian study by the University of Western Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children and the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) surveyed 8,429 people across Canada asking about their experiences of domestic violence. The survey found that 81.6% of people experiencing Intimate Partner Abuse chose to tell a co-worker about it (Wathen, 2014).

We hope to create workplaces that are more supportive to people who are experiencing Intimate Partner Violence.

The first step is understanding what workplace supports are currently available. Please help by taking 10 minutes of your time to complete the survey on the attached link by November 21, 2017.

Please forward this survey on to anyone in your network who may be interested in assisting with this important research.


A call to our members



         If so, we are inviting you provide us with some feedback…


Dear WomenatthecentrE Members,

Dr. Robin Mason and Dr. Janice Du Mont of Women’s College Hospital have received funding from the Ministry of Children and Youth Services to explore improving collaboration between Children’s Aid Societies (CAS) and adult mental health services. In an effort to better understand the current state of collaboration, a survey has been developed to collect and document the opinions and experiences of women survivors of domestic violence who have also received services from a CAS and adult mental health service providers over the same period of time. This survey is being made available to women across Ontario such as yourself (and potentially beyond) through WomenatthecentrE’s website and listserv.

The purpose of this survey is to help us determine how CAS workers and adult mental health service providers communicate (or not) when working with women experiencing abuse and in turn, inform recommendations for improved collaboration. Specifically, your responses will be first anonymized (meaning anything that could identify you will be removed), then presented at a meeting of experts and workers from groups that provide service to women and children experiencing mental health issues, substance abuse issues and/or domestic violence (to be held this November 2016). Any quotes included in the final report for the Ministry or any other publications will also be made anonymous.

The survey takes approximately 10-15 minutes to complete. Completion of the survey is completely voluntary and no one will ask you for your name nor will anything you say ever be associated with you when we talk about this study. If we ever do use a quote, we will ensure you cannot be identified. By clicking the link on the following page, you are consenting to participate in this survey. You are however, free at any time to opt out of answering a question, or the entire survey.

Your decision to take part or not take part in this survey will not affect your relationship with WomenatthecentrE and please note that no one will know if you participated or not. Should you chose to participate, your insights and experiences will help us make informed recommendations for improved service provision for women and children experiencing mental health issues, substance abuse issues and/or domestic violence.

If you have any questions, please contact Maeve Paterson, the study coordinator at:

416-323-6400 ext. 5140 or

We thank you for considering participating in advance and ask you to submit your surveys

by September 23, 2016. Please note that two reminder e-mails will be sent to you over the next two weeks inviting you to complete this survey.

To complete the survey, please click on the link below, or cut and paste the URL in your browser:


The Court System from a Social Worker Perspective

My name is Linda, and I’m a fourth year Bachelor of Social Work student at York University. I am currently completing my practicum experience at WomenatthecentrE, an organization devoted to transforming lives and eradicating violence against women. Everything about the organization appealed to me, but I became particularly interested when I was introduced to the Court Watch program.


The Trials of Observing Trials

Similar to the other volunteers here on the blog, I became involved in the Courtwatch project thanks to Adam. I recently completed a master’s degree in Gender, Feminist and Women’s Studies at York University and while my thesis focused on the issue of how to make high school curriculum more inclusive, the lack of formal teaching and discussion of healthy relationships in schools is one I have always found troubling. (more…)


Please Mind the Gap

Just like my fellow volunteer Ariel, I was also convinced by my friend Adam into joining WomenatthecentrE’s Courtwatch initiative. It didn’t take much coaxing, however, for me to realize how great of an opportunity this was to help out in the community, particularly at the grassroots level. I am a recent graduate from the University of Miami with a psychology degree, also having minored in sociology. (more…)


The Court System Through the Lens of a Courtwatch Volunteer

When my friend and fellow volunteer Adam began discussing the Courtwatch program with me, I became instantly engrossed and wanted to know how I could become involved. My interest was particularly keen because, as someone who has always felt that it was important to help out and become involved within our community, I believed this initiative was a way in which I could do my part. (more…)


Courtwatch 2013’s FIRST EVER BLOG POST!

I walked into the courtroom just as I had on many other mornings this summer, expecting to hear a charge read and then, probably, a long and complicated explanation for why this particular case would NOT be heard today.  Deliberations put off for another month so the prosecution could get their case better together, or perhaps the wrong person had got stuck in traffic on their way, or simply that a necessary letter had gotten lost on its way to the defense. (more…)

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