Shoe Memorial ceremonies help remember victims of violence against women


Click on the image above to see the photo gallery.

Toronto – December 9, 2015 – Across the country, UFCW Canada activists stepped up to raise awareness at December 6th Shoe Memorials to commemorate the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.

The Canada-wide memorials gathered thousands of pairs of women's boots and shoes to be donated to women's emergency shelters across the country. The footwear will go to women and children who have escaped violence households, often with just the clothes on their backs.

Now in its 12th year, the first-ever Shoe Memorial was held in Vancouver, British Columbia in 2003, to commemorate the 14 female students who were murdered at Montreal's École Polytechnique in 1989, as well as thousands of other women in Canada who have been victims of violence and murder. Since then, activists across the country have joined the Shoe Memorial effort, to symbolize women that lost their lives or have experienced violence.

In Vancouver, UFCW Canada Local 1518 and UFCW Canada Local 247 as well as the Shoe Memorial Committee and community partners once again participated in the annual Shoe Memorial on the steps of the Vancouver Art Gallery.

UFCW Canada Local 401 and community partners participated in three events across Alberta to commemorate the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. Vigils were held at City Hall in Medicine Hat, AB, City Hall in Red Deer, AB and the YWCA building in Lethbridge, AB.

In Winnipeg, UFCW Canada Local 832 in partnership with the Manitoba Federation of Labour attended the Women's Memorial Luncheon in honour of the National Day of Remembrance at the Union Centre Auditorium.

In Saskatoon, UFCW Canada Local 1400 and Local 248P activists and community partners from all across Saskatchewan gathered at the University of Saskatchewan for the annual December 6th candlelight vigil and Shoe Memorial.

In the greater Toronto area, activists from UFCW Canada Local 175, Local 1000A, Local 206, Local 102 and the National Office attended a Rose Vigil and Shoe Memorial ceremony at the Rose Theatre in Brampton, Ontario. Shoes were received from UFCW Canada Local Unions across Ontario, to be delivered to the Women's Habitat of Etobicoke.

In St. John's, NL, UFCW Canada Local 1252 activists donated more than 75 pairs of women's and children's boots and shoes to the cause. Local1252's Executive Board also made a cash donation in support of women's shelters throughout the province.

Throughout the month of December, UFCW Canada in partnership with YWCA Canada, were once again part of the successful #NotOkay social media initiative to raise awareness about gender-based violence. Activists from coast-to-coast sent in their images displaying their stance against gender based violence. Thank you to all who helped participate in the initiative.