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DOVE committee reaching out to prevent violence against women

Displays to be set up this week at high schools, hospital & leisure centre

A local community group is taking its anti-violence message to the street this week as the country recognizes a day devoted to action on violence against women.

Thursday marks a violent anniversary in Canadian history. On Dec. 6, 1989, Marc Lepine walked into a classroom at École Polytechnique in Montreal and shot 27 female students - 14 died and 13 were wounded - simply because they were women.

Since 1991, the day has been recognized as the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women and this year the DOVE (Delta Opposes Violence Everywhere) committee is getting out to bring public awareness to the issue of violence against women.

DOVE is a committee of community agencies that work together to end violence in relationships.

The committee includes representatives from Deltassist, Delta police victim services and domestic violence units, the school district, the Boys and Girls Club, Delta Mental Health and the Ministry for Children and Families.

This week, DOVE committee members will be at various locations around the community to raise awareness to the issue of violence against women.

The committee is hosting displays during the lunch hour at three Delta high schools, including Delta Secondary. DOVE will have a display at Delta Hospital from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. today and that display will also be at Ladner Leisure Centre on Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

In addition to spreading awareness and information, DOVE also continues with its Emergency Care Kit Project for women, men and children leaving abusive relationships.

The nature of an abusive relationship often requires those involved to relocate suddenly without notice for safety reasons.

The kits include basic items, such as toiletries, to get people through a critical time.

With the support of the community, the committee has been able to maintain this program and help serve the needs of individuals and families in times of crisis.

There is always a need for more items for the kits.

Anyone wishing to make a donation can visit the Delta police website at www.deltapolice.ca/victimservices/dove.php or contact Jill Colley at jcolley@ deltapolice.ca.

jkerr@delta-optimist.com