Thank you to the co-petitioners of the Yazidi trauma care petition. The petition was tabled in the House of Commons, but no action has been taken.
Although the petition gathered a lot of publicity and public support for trauma care for the Yazidi women and girls, we regret we were unable to affect government action.
The organizers of the Women Refugees Advocacy Project invited Human Rights, Refugee, and Women’s organizations to join us as co-petitioners of the Yazidi trauma care petition. Your collaboration meant a great deal. As MP Jenny Kwan tabled the petition in Ottawa on October 29, 2018 she announced that the petition was submitted by over 300 organizations.
Women Refugees Advocacy Project, Vancouver, BC
Battered Women’s Support Services, Vancouver, BC
One Free World International, Toronto, ON
Safeteen International, Vancouver, BC
Women Transforming Cities, Vancouver, BC
Ishtar Transition Housing Society, Langley, BC
Women in Film & Television, Vancouver, BC
DWI: Dragu Worker International
Reel Causes, Vancouver, BC
Signée Femmes, le centre de femmes, Rivière-Rouge, QC
Persons Against Non-State Torture, Truro, NS
Centre de Solidarité Lesbienne, Montréal, QC
InterSpiritual Sustainability Council
Canadian Unitarian Council, Canada
(representing 47 congregations throughout Canada)
Centre des femmes d’ici et d’ailleurs, Montréal, QC
Yezidis of British Columbia, Surrey, BC
Regroupement des maisons pour femmes victimes de violence conjugale, Montréal, Québec Regroupement des maisons represents 42 women’s shelters across Quebec
L’R des centres de femmes du Québec, le regroupement québécois des centres de femmes (The Quebec group of women’s centers is the largest feminist network for autonomous community action in Quebec) represents 87 women’s centres
Fédération des maisons d’hébergement pour femmes, 36 maisons
La Corporation de développement communautaire des Hautes-Laurentides (CDCHL) 50 organizations
RFL (Réseau des femmes des Laurentides) 20 organizations
ROCL (Regroupement des organismes communautaires des Laurentides) 145 organizations
Statements of support
“We are happy to participate in the Yazidi Advocacy Project and stand united with other organizations across Canada as co-petitioners. We extend our hand to all women without regard for nationality, culture, race or religion. There are no boundaries to attaining the rights and welfare of women.”
~ Signée Femmes, le centre de femmes
“The InterSpiritual Sustainability Council is committed to welcoming refugees equitably into a compassionate society that offers specialized and accessible services to support their healing, health and resilience. As Canadian citizens, the Conveners of the InterSpiritual Sustainability Council petition the federal government to immediately address the need for supportive trauma recovery services among Yazidi females who have come to Canada seeking refuge. We are all one.”
~ InterSpiritual Sustainability Council
“Women in Film and Television Vancouver stands with organizations across the country who support the struggles of the Yazidi women and children in Canada.”
~ Women in Film and Television Vancouver
“Nous sommes reconnaissantes que le Canada, à l’instar des Nations unies, ait reconnu que le peuple yézidi vivait un génocide, que les femmes yézidies étaient utilisées comme armes de guerre et nécessitaient l’assistance du Canada. Aujourd’hui, nous implorons Canada de respecter ses engagements, et de fournir l’aide psychologique et sociale « trauma care » promise, et plus que nécessaire. Nous savons que les femmes qui vivent des crimes de guerres, de la torture, des violences sexuelles inimaginables, des enlèvements, de l’esclavage, arrivent ici avec des réalités de santé mentale des plus difficiles, des traumatismes atroces, sans parler des maints défis qu’elles doivent confronter déjà, en tant que femmes réfugiées, récemment arrivées dans un nouveau monde. Il faut que ces femmes reçoivent ces aides, ce support, et ce, depuis trop longtemps déjà. Elles ont besoin d’accompagnement pour pouvoir revivre et apprendre à se dissocier des horreurs qui les habite et les hante. Canada, nous vous demandons de respecter vos engagements et enfin fournir le financement d’un soutien psychologique et social adapté pour les survivantes du génocide yézidi.”
~ Le Centre des femmes d’ici et d’ailleurs
“We are thankful that Canada, following the United Nations, has recognized the genocide of the Yazidi people and that Yazidi women are used as weapons of war and require Canada’s assistance. Today, we implore Canada to honor its commitments and to provide the promised psychological and social assistance “trauma care”, which is more than necessary. We know that women who are victims of war crimes – torture, unimaginable sexual violence, kidnappings and enslavement – arrive here with very heavy mental health issues, suffer horrific traumas, combined with the many challenges that they must already confront, as refugee women, recently arrived in a new country. This aid and support is long overdue for Yazidi women. They need support to be able to learn to live again, and separate themselves from the horrors that inhabit and haunt them. Canada, we ask you to respect your commitments and finally provide funding for appropriate psychological and social support for survivors of the Yazidi genocide.”
~ Le Centre des femmes d’ici et d’ailleurs (The Intercultural Women’s Centre)
“L’R des centres de femmes du Québec, le regroupement québécois des centres de femmes, souhaite être cosignataire de la pétition visant à placer le traitement des traumatismes de femmes yézides à l’ordre du jour du gouvernement fédéral.”
~ L’R des centres de femmes du Québec, le regroupement québécois des centres de femmes
“The R of Quebec women’s centers, the Quebec group of women’s centers, wishes to place Yezidi women’s trauma treatment on the federal government’s agenda.”
~ L’R des centres de femmes du Québec (The Quebec group of Women’s Centres)
“We are asking that the Canadian Government keep their promise to the Yazidi women refugees who suffered enslavement and torture, at the hands of ISIS captors, by providing support services and torture informed care. In addition, all women in Canada who have endured non-State torture (NST) deserve equal care. Article 5 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights states no one should be subjected to torture.”
~ Persons Against Non-State Torture
“A Yezidi in tears is a person in tears everywhere – we Yezidis of BC are grateful for Canada in acknowledging the plight of our people as a genocide and are truly thankful for our government’s contribution to bringing to Canada as refugees some of our survivor women and girls in need of intensive trauma care. The Yezidi nation has been attacked 74 times in the past. Each time, thousands of our people displaced, our females taken as sex slaves, thousands of children became orphaned, many of our men killed and our wealth and lands stolen.
“We ask Canada to be part of our legacy to act as urgently as possible to help us make this genocide the very last one!
“For us to exist for years to come and thrive as a community of peaceful spiritual people, we Yezidis must live in societies like Canada where multiculturalism is a government policy. There are more Yezidi-refugee camps in the Middle East than there are Yezidi towns. There are more Yezidi refugees around the world than there are Yezidi citizens belonging to a country. We urgently ask Canada to open her glorious heart and bring more of our people who are suffering in horrible conditions in refugee camps to Canada.”
~ Yezidi of BC
“On behalf of One Free World International, Rev. Majed El Shafie and all of
our team, we stand strongly behind this petition. After 4 years of
fighting for the survivors of the genocide being committed by ISIS, we saw
the scale of the damage first hand, from rape, sex slavery, to destruction
and death, but we also saw the human strength, and the human unity where
we all come together. It doesn’t matter our colour, religion, sexual
orientation or background. We all become one hand to help the most
vulnerable. Our world is an unjust place, not because of the people doing
evil but because of the people who remain silent about it. In the absence
of light darkness prevails.
“By signing the petition and standing together we become a voice for the
voiceless and a candle in the darkness.
“They can kill the dreamer but no one can kill the dream.”
~ One Free World International
“The Yazidi women and girls are our sisters, mothers, nieces, cousins, daughters, aunts. Those who were able to escape their tormentors have told us that some ‘women and girls began to scratch and bloody themselves in an attempt to make themselves unattractive to potential buyers…. To avoid being raped, some of the girls killed themselves by slitting their wrists or throats, or hanging themselves, or throwing themselves from buildings.’ [Source: The Guardian World]. Please, Prime Minister Trudeau, the Canadian Unitarian Council asks that you fulfill your government’s promise to provide accessible, effective and timely support and therapy to the Yazidi women and girls who have come to Canada to try and build new lives.”
~ Unitarian Council of Canada
“The Women Transforming Cities International Society stands united with the Yazidi Advocacy Project. Our Yazidi sisters, the resilient survivors of such unimaginable atrocities, need effective, sensitive and timely torture-informed care so they can rebuild their lives that have been marred by violence.
We wish to reiterate that the Canadian government needs to honour its commitment to providing comprehensive trauma treatment for Yazidi women, and that their needs must be on the federal government’s agenda.”
~ Women Transforming Cities