Friday, July 9, 2010

Rally on Tuesday, July 13

Dear allies,

There will be a rally held on Tuesday, July 13 in response to the Ottawa Hospital turning away survivors of sexual assault. This is not a Coalition-specific event, but we will be there in order to support survivors. A press release follows. Please attend and spread the word about this event!


Ottawa Residents Take a Stand against the Treatment of Sexual Assault Survivors

Ottawa, July 9, 2010 - Front-line workers, activists and Ottawa residents will be gathering at the Human Rights Monument on Tuesday, July 13th 2010 to protest the lack of adequate sexual assault support in Ottawa and across the province.

Last week, the media reported that sexual assault victims at the Civic Hospital were told to either wait or head to Renfrew in order to be seen by a sexual assault nurse. The wait times were as long as 48 hours and required the woman not to shower until she was seen by a nurse. Many women were not able to access other hospitals and never got any medical care. The Ottawa protocol, which was agreed upon by Ottawa Police Services, the Ottawa Hospitals and sexual assault support workers, outlines that women must be seen at the hospital within one hour.

The Civic Hospital came under fire for their failure to comply with the protocol and have recently announced that nurses will be on staff 24 hours a day. Although we applaud this change, it is not enough.

We are asking for consistent compliance with established protocols across the city and the maintenance of protocols across the province. We want the health and safety of Ontario women to be made a priority and not an after-thought. Access to basic medical care is a right that is being denied to women.

The Ottawa Police Services have stated that everyday, 8 women are sexually assaulted and only one reports it. The time for action is now.

The rally will begin at noon at the Human Rights Monument (Corner of Elgin and Lisgar) followed by a march to the Women’s Monument (Elgin and Cooper). The rally will be bilingual and will include the signing of petitions. Cold refreshments and snacks will be made available at the Women’s Monument.

For more information
Julie S. Lalonde

Coalition for a Carleton Sexual Assault Centre
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Support Line: 613-620-1030

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