The B.C. government is counting down to Moose Hide Campaign Day on February 16, 2017 by encouraging men throughout the BC Public Service and members of the Legislative Assembly to participate in the B.C.-born campaign to stop violence against women and girls.
The Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation and the Provincial Office of Domestic Violence are working with campaign founder Paul Lacerte to encourage participation in a sunrise to sundown fast. Men can demonstrate the depth of their commitment to end violence either through a full food and water fast, or a partial fast depending on individual circumstances and health needs.
In addition to the public service fast, John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation is encouraging male members of the B.C. Legislature to join in the fast if they can and all members, men and women, to wear Moose Hide pins on Moose Hide Campaign Day.
Since it started in 2011, the Moose Hide Campaign has distributed over 500,000 Moose Hide Campaign pins, and secured support and participation from the Assembly of First Nations, the B.C. Legislature, the First Nations Health Society, the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, the RCMP B.C. Region and a host of First Nations communities throughout British Columbia.
The Moose Hide Campaign is a grassroots movement that continues to draw support in the stand against violence towards women and girls. Feb. 16, 2017 will be the sixth year the campaign has held a day of workshops, healing ceremonies, talking circles and fasting to encourage men to be accountable and be part of the solution.
In 2016, the B.C. government provided $250,000 to support campaign expansion. The campaign aims to increase its outreach throughout British Columbia and Canada and has a vision of one million men fasting on Moose Hide Campaign Day in 2020.
Paul Lacerte, Executive Director, Moose Hide Campaign Development Society –
“The burden of advocacy to end gender-based violence has been carried by women for far too long but there is so much that men can to do share that burden. Fasting demonstrates that individual men can stand up and offer a sacrifice to the women in their lives and their communities. I encourage the men in British Columbia’s Public Service to stand with us and say that the violence has to stop.”
John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation –
“Creating a safer world for women and girls is a shared responsibility, involving government, First Nations leaders and communities. That’s why I’m calling on all my colleagues in the Legislature to participate in Moose Hide Day in any way they can to demonstrate that every individual act can make a difference.”
Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Children and Family Development –
“Moose Hide sends a powerful message, encouraging men to be part of the solution to end domestic violence. Campaigns like Moose Hide and #SaySomething are working to raise awareness about this issue and make sure that everyone knows how to recognize the signs of domestic violence and where to turn if they, or someone they know, need support.”
- The inspiration for the Moose Hide Campaign came from a hunting expedition in 2011 near Highway 16 when Paul Lacerte’s daughter Raven skinned a moose to feed the family over winter. The proximity to Highway 16 sparked the idea that moose hide could be used as a symbol to stop violence.
- According to Statistics Canada, on average, a woman in Canada is killed in a domestic homicide every five days, and on any given day, over 6,000 women and children are living in emergency shelters to escape abuse.
- Recognizing that Aboriginal women are three times more likely to experience violence and be assaulted by their partner than non-Aboriginal women, B.C. is investing $2 million to help Aboriginal communities and organizations develop and deliver local programs as part of the three-year Provincial Domestic Violence Plan.
- In February 2016, the provincial government co-hosted the B.C. Family Gathering event for more than 350 family members of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. The Province shared their feedback with the federal government and participants of the National Roundtable on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.
- British Columbia invests $70 million each year on prevention and intervention services and programs to protect vulnerable women and victims of crime.
- Over the last two years, an additional $7 million in civil forfeiture grants has been targeted to action on violence against women. This has included more than $2.4 million for projects that focus on supporting Aboriginal communities in anti-violence and prevention initiatives.
- B.C. is improving transportation and cell service coverage to increase public safety on highways in the north.
- B.C. has committed $5 million to the Highway 16 Transportation Action Plan which will improve access to transportation services along the Highway 16 corridor and enable residents of First Nations communities and municipalities to travel safely to and from rural towns and villages along Highway 16.
- Under B.C.’s 10 year ‘Connecting British Columbia’ agreement with Telus, more than 1,600 km of new cellular highway coverage has been completed, which includes more than 500 km of expanded cell-phone service along Highway 16.
Moose Hide Campaign Development Society: moosehidecampaign.ca/
Provincial Domestic Violence Plan: ow.ly/QyVL3073ldZ
Link to Minister Rustad's fasting challenge video: youtu.be/l9isAcSLIHg
Many First Nations leaders are long-time supporters of the Moose Hide Campaign. Check out this video from 2015: ow.ly/Ic1l308czoj