SEPT 29, CANADA: End Homelessness Day for Women and Girls

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September 29 is National Action Day to End Homelessness for Women and Girls
Women and girls make up half of Canada’s homeless, says Homes for Women Campaign

Toronto, September 29, 2015 – Today is National Action Day to End Homelessness for Women and Girls, say the Homes for Women Campaign and All Our Sisters. With new polling information showing that more than 50% of Canadians support putting a priority on affordable housing for low income and homeless people, these national networks are drawing attention to ending women’s and girls homelessness.

“Almost half the people struggling without homes in Canada are women and girls,” says Paulette Senior, CEO of YWCA Canada. “They’re not visible because it’s not safe for them to be seen. Homeless women and girls use any means possible to stay off the streets, whether it’s couch-surfing with friends, trading sex for a place to crash, or lucking into a bed in one of the few emergency shelters dedicated to women.”

“Child sexual abuse, violence at home and homophobia are major drivers of girls’ homelessness,” says Ann Decter, Coordinator of Homes for Women and YWCA Canada Director of Advocacy. “That teenage girl slouched on a downtown sidewalk, or wandering the streets at night, she’s there because abuse of some kind put her there. She needs a path to a safe home, not one that leads to a lifelong cycle of abuse, trauma, poverty and homelessness.”

National Action Day to End Homelessness for Women and Girls is part of a national week of action organized by housing advocates across Canada. Housing advocates are calling for a rights-based national housing strategy and federal re-investment in affordable housing of at least $2 billion per year. That level of investment was supported by more than 50% of those reached in a recent survey conducted by Ekos and commissioned by the Vote Housing For All Network.

The national week of actions runs from September 23rd to September 30th, with different groups and housing advocates launching events and actions across the country.

YWCA Canada, host of the Homes for Women Campaign, is the country’s oldest and largest women’s multi-service organization. Our 32 Member Associations serve women and girls in nine provinces and two territories. YWCA Canada is the nation’s single largest provider of shelter to women and children fleeing violence, the second largest provider of childcare services, and an active member of the World YWCA.

For more information visit www.homesforwomen.ca, www.ywcacanada.ca, find us on Twitter @YWCA_Canada or at www.facebook.com/ywcacanada.

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