DV @ Work NL Project Update: Getting the Survey our the door

The good news is that a national survey on Domestic Violence (DV) and its impact on the workforce, was circulated in 2014 and, thanks to this initial work by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and an amazing team at the University of Western Ontario (UWO) – there is ongoing work rolling right across the country. The bad news is that back in 2014, this survey’s uptake wasn’t strong in Atlantic Canada. There weren’t enough surveys completed for the results to be ‘statistically significant.’ So, the first task for the DV@WORK-NL team was to re-jig the original 2014 survey – and launch it again!

We are determined to increase participation in the survey in Newfoundland and Labrador! We want to ensure that, along with key cross-provincial comparisons that the data from the survey will offer, we will also be able to provide and analyse some new kinds of data – specifically relevant to Newfoundland and Labrador. So…

This summer involved considerable consultation with a whole host of partners. This involved painstaking edits to the original survey by NAWN, OAWA, NLFL, the Mokami Status of Women Council – along with feedback from our own board at the St. John’s Status of Women Council, and feedback by the Canadian Federation of Students at Memorial University and the Safe Harbour Outreach Project (SHOP) here in St. John’s – just to name a few. By the end of the summer our survey was carefully re-jigged with Newfoundland and Labrador in mind!

  • International students at MUN recommended some new questions that relate specifically to ‘precarious labour.’ They challenged us to gather data on students working inside the university itself and outside in precarious, part-time jobs. They also encouraged us to look carefully at how immigrants and refugees might be intercepting workplace supports.
  • Key activists from SHOP pointed out that working alone (or even isolated in a home office) might offer additional/unique challenges to women in need of resources.
  • Rich discussions in Corner Brook helped identify the way DV can impact LGBTQ2S survivors. Just as an example, without the right emergency supports, an abuser and their victim could find themselves in the same room in a shelter!

This much is clear: when it comes to examining the way DV impacts our workplaces – critical resources need to be both identified and developed. The support provided in our workplaces via coworkers and employers – can play an integral role in how things play out. Preliminary discussions and interviews have made us even more determined to angle in on key demographics that have, to date, been sidelined out of community discussions. Needless to say – our list of questions is growing daily.

After the editing was completed, the survey was quickly sent back into supportive hands at the Centre for Research and Education Woman and Children (CREWAC) at UWO. We were all so excited to see the online survey activated and so grateful for the ongoing support from CREWAC. Special thanks is owed to the CLC, who shared outreach ideas, press kits and resources and especially to Robyn Pike here at the St. John’s Status of Women Council, who brought the local campaign to life with some expertly crafted posters and press releases.

We are excited to report that on this front – there is still more to come; the survey outreach-team is not finished yet! The more surveys we manage to have filled out over the next few months – the more accurate our data will be here in Newfoundland and Labrador – and the better resources will be able to both identify and build. If you have already filled out the survey yourself – you can help the team enormously by sharing the link with family and friends and co-workers. The survey link will be active until January 2019 – but don’t wait until then! https://sjwomenscentre.ca/dvatworknl/




What we do know is that Newfoundland and Labrador has among the highest levels of Domestic Violence (DV) in Canada.  What we don’t know is the impact of that violence on workplaces in our province.

To understand more, the St. John’s Status of Women Council has partnered with the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women and Children at the University of Western Ontario to launch a critically important survey on the impact of DV on workers and workplaces in Newfoundland and Labrador.

To ensure that our provincial economy can prosper, safe workplaces are essential. Domestic Violence costs the Canadian economy a staggering $7.4 billion annually. The good news is that Canadian and international research has shown that positive change can happen when the right types of policies, training and other supports are put in place.


Domestic Violence in our communities and workplaces is both a social and economic challenge for all of us. In just 30 minutes, by completing this survey, you can contribute to creating workplace practices that help support victims of DV and their co-workers.


The survey is anonymous, and participation is voluntary. All workers in Newfoundland and Labrador over the age of 15 are invited to fill it out.

We are working hard to ensure participation from all regions of Newfoundland and Labrador, all genders, Indigenous people, and people with different perspectives and experiences. Your voice is important, whether or not you have personally experienced or witnessed violence.

In appreciation of your time spent completing the survey, you have the option to enter to win one of three $250 prepaid VISA cards.


  1. Fill out the survey at: https://sjwomenscentre.ca/dvatworknl/
  2. Talk to your co-workers, friends and family and encourage them to take part. Share the link on social media and invite everyone in your workplace to take the survey.


  • A Justice Canada study estimated that businesses lose approximately $78 million annually due to DV, but the real costs are much higher.
  • Approximately every six days, a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner. Indigenous women are killed at six times the rate of non-Indigenous women.
  • In any given night in Canada, 3,491 women and their 2,724 children sleep in shelters because it isn’t safe at home.


The nationwide survey launched by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and the University of Western Ontario in 2014 provided solid data to help us understand national DV trends. This information illustrated that DV is a systemic barrier to women’s economic security. This has severe implications for our province’s labour force and presents a tremendous cost to our economy.

The CLC’s initiative was inspired by ground breaking surveys used to gather data in Australia. The Australian findings identified the prevalence and impact of DV on the workplace and resulted in vital new legislation. It mandated domestic/family violence workplace benefits, including dedicated paid leave and flexible work arrangements.

A growing number of provinces in Canada are implementing DV Leave legislation and policies to make workplaces safer. New Brunswick has most recently implemented DV Leave.


  • Over 80 per cent of survivors reported that DV negatively affected their working lives.
  • Over half (53.5%) of those reporting DV experiences indicated that at least one type of abusive act occurred at or near the workplace. Of these, the most common were abusive phone calls or text messages (40.6%) and stalking or harassment near the workplace.
  • 53 per cent of survivors felt their job performance was negatively impacted.
  • 75 per cent had difficulty concentrating on their work.
  • 19 per cent reported causing or nearly causing workplace accidents due to their violent relationship.
  • 40 per cent of those who reported experiencing Domestic Violence, said DV made it difficult for them to get to work.





  • Stanford, Jim (2016), “Economic Aspects of Pail Domestic Leave Provisions,” Briefing Paper – Centre for Future Work at the Australia Institute.
  • Fonseca, Peter (2009), “Bill 168, Occupational Health and Safety Amendment Act (Violence and Harassment in the Workplace and Other Maters),” Legislative Assembly of Ontario.
  • Lewin, Brent (2012), “Justice Canada study says spousal abuse costs country at least 7.4 billion a year,” National Post.
  • Martin-Misener, R., & Valaitis, R. (2009). “A scoping literature review of collaboration between primary care and public health,” McMaster University
  • Mojtehedzadeh, Sara (2014), “Domestic violence follows victims to work, survey finds,” Toronto Star.
  • Wathen, C.N., MacGregor, J.C.D., MacQuarrie, B.J. with the Canadian Labour Congress. (2014). Can Work be Safe, When Home Isn’t? Initial Findings of a Pan-Canadian Survey on Domestic Violence  and the Workplace. London, ON: Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women and Children.
  • The Legislative Assembly of Manitoba (2016), “ The Employment Standards Code Injury or Illness and Extension of Compassionate Care Leave.)”
  • Statistics Canada (2017), “Labour Force Characteristics Newfoundland and Labrador,” Labour Force Survey




St. John’s Status of Women Council calls for an end to Operation Northern Spotlight


October 13, 2017

St. John’s Status of Women Council calls for an end to Operation Northern Spotlight

The St. John’s Status of Women Council (SJSWC) and its Safe Harbour Outreach Project (SHOP) are deeply committed to the health, safety, and human rights of women, and trans women involved in the sex industry, including those who are at heightened risk of human trafficking and exploitation. As such, the SJSWC is asking the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary (RNC) and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to immediately end the practice of Operation Northern Spotlight and all other undercover operations targeting sex workers.

Operation Northern Spotlight is a harmful attempt to deal with a complex issue, that targets sex workers for interrogation, detention and/or arrest, without adequately distinguishing between those who are underage and/or coerced, and those who are not.

This strategy is one that is based on deception and manipulation, as evidenced by police posing as sex workers’ clients in hotel rooms. These actions foster distrust and adversarial relationships with law enforcement. Pulling people out of the sex industry without their consent and penalizing those who do not agree to exit the sex industry does not ‘save’ or ‘rescue’ them. At its worst, it harms sex workers by forcing them underground to evade police. Further, this deters sex workers from turning to the police to report crime that they have witnessed and/or experienced. For women and girls who are at risk of exploitation and human trafficking this practice criminalizes them and perpetuates lack of safety and trust.

Jenny Wright, Executive Director of the St. John’s Status of Women Council:

 “We have been working with the police in good faith to find strategies to reduce violence against sex workers and find meaningful ways in which sex workers and the police can work collaboratively. Operation Northern Spotlight has broken that trust.”

‘Rescuing’ individuals who do not wish to be rescued has multiple impacts. Sex workers report being confused and frightened and may suffer trauma and even exhibit symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Sex workers lose income and experience economic hardship. This places sex workers in a precarious position where they must either accept dates or provide services they normally would not. This operation further criminalizes women by increasing their chances of being arrested and detained on non- sex work related charges.

Bridget Clarke, Outreach Worker, Safe Harbour Outreach Project:

 “Women we work with at SHOP are confused, angry, and feel threatened by Operation Northern Spotlight. Some women have told us that they are no longer doing outcalls so their working conditions have immediately become less safe.”

Targeting sex workers through approaches that induce fear and increase mistrust of police jeopardizes any chance of cooperation between sex workers and law enforcement. This type of repressive enforcement also threatens the foundation of a collaborative, multi-stakeholder, community-based approach that SJSWC has been working painstakingly towards – in our shared goal of reducing violence against sex workers.

SJSWC joins Ontario and British Columbia advocates in calling for an immediate end to Operation Northern Spotlight, instead we ask that law enforcement:

  • Include sex worker voices in any and all work to end human tracking and exploitation;
  • Stop using anti-trafficking programs to justify the intrusion of law enforcement in places where consensual sex work is done, including indoor sex work businesses;
  • Review existing anti-trafficking policies and programs that equate sex work with human trafficking.



Media Contact

Heather Jarvis

Program Coordinator

Safe Harbour Outreach Project



About St. John’s Status of Women Council/Women’s Centre 

The St. John’s Status of Women Council/Women’s Centre is a feminist organization that since 1972 is continually working to achieve equality and justice through political activism, community collaboration and the creation of a safe and inclusive space for all women in the St. John’s area. The St. John’s Status of Women Council operates the Women’s Centre, Marguerite’s Place Supportive Housing Program and the Safe Harbour Outreach Project.

About Safe Harbour Outreach Project  

The Safe Harbour Outreach Project (SHOP) exists to advocate for the human rights of sex workers. SHOP serves women for whom sex work is an occupation; we also serve women who are in the industry not by choice, who are wishing to exit. We provide front line support, system navigation and outreach from a harm reduction approach.

Celebrating our Victories!: The Massive Success of “Introduction to Feminist Activism”

Celebrating our Victories!: The Massive Success of “Introduction to Feminist Activism”

Let me be honest with you, when I pitched the idea of a 5-week series of workshops on feminist activism to be held from 7-9pm of Thursday nights at the women’s center I thought that there was a good chance no one would come. It takes a special kind of person to give up her free time to come out and learn more about social justice, especially during the few warm and summery evenings we have here in Newfoundland and Labrador. But guess what? Those special people came out, and they came out in droves. Every week the SJSOWC welcomed 20+ participants hungry for the opportunity to share their feminist activism, and learn new strategies for making change.

In each workshop we covered a different topic together. Beginning with “Feminism and Activism” in our first week, we moved on to “Feminism, Sex and Love”, “Feminism and Healthcare”, “Feminism and Parenting”, and finally “Feminism and Solidarity”. For those of you who weren’t able to make it out to the workshops, here’s a quick overview:

Feminism and Activism: Feminist approaches to activism encompass a wide range of strategies from radical direct action, to minor interventions in daily life. Despite the power of feminist theoretical scholarship to inform and inspire practical activism, a deep chasm remains between feminist theory and activist practice. In this presentation we explored 5 activist tactics that make possible the redistribution of power including research, support, campaigning, organizing and protest.

Feminism Sex and Love: Discussions of feminism and sex often center on sexual violence. During this workshop we left sexual violence to the side in order to discuss some of the other ways that women experience sexual inequity. Topics included sexual consent, orgasm inequality, and some of the ways women’s bodies are commonly misunderstood. We also talked about what feminist love might look like, including straight, queer and platonic relationships.

Feminism and Healthcare: Perhaps our most explosive workshop. If you don’t know about the women’s health scandals that have rocked this province, including the Cameron Inquiry, the huge number of hysterectomies in Central Newfoundland, and the overuse of cesarean sections (sometimes called unne-cesareans), then it is time to start paying attention! We went on to cover some of the ways that women have made major strides in the healthcare field including the increased representation of women physicians, and women’s contributions to the wellness movement.

Feminism and Parenting: We welcomed our youngest participant at this workshop. At just a few weeks old this teeny feminist-in-training set the stage for a broad discussion of feminism and parenthood, as well as the choice to remain child-free. Together we explored the biggest taboo, people who regret having children. We also discussed the kinds of practices feminist parents engage in when it comes to how they treat their children, other parents, and themselves.

Feminism and Solidarity: In our last workshop of the series we focused on women and work. This included the history of women in the labour movement and the importance of unions in Newfoundland and Labrador. We also discussed how unions are used to engender social justice and political action. Participants were most excited by the simple step-by-step instructions for how to get involved in your union if you are a part of one, and how to start a union if your workplace is not already unionized.

Sad you missed one or all of these workshops? Know a group who would benefit from one of these presentations? Contact Feminist-in Residence Chandra Kavanagh at kavanacl [at] mcmaster.ca for more information on how to bring these workshops to you!

Picture: Alison receiving her certificate for attending all 5 classes for Feminist in Residence, Chandra Kavanagh.






By Chandra Kavanagh

Chandra is an ethicist, author and international public speaker Chandra Kavanagh is a PhD Candidate in the philosophy department at McMaster University where she studies feminist thought and biomedical ethics. Chandra has delivered presentations on political and ethical issues that have received high acclaim across Canada, the United States, Europe and Australia. An award-winning feminist and labour activist, Chandra received the 2016 Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario “Sisters in Solidarity” award for her outstanding work on gender issues in her role as president of CUPE Local 3906. Chandra has 20+ publications in both academic and popular media formats with a strong focus on ethics and gender.


SJSWC Launches Membership Drive Campaign


For Immediate Release

July 6, 2017

SJSWC Launches Membership Drive Campaign

St. John’s, NL – The St. John’s Status of Women Council is the oldest, member-owned women’s centre in Canada. Today, they launch a new campaign inviting all people who feel passionately about issues such as wage parity, accessible childcare, gender balance in leadership, anti-violence work, sex worker rights, and feminism to become members.

Jenny Wright, Executive Director of the St. John’s Status of Women Council:

“I am so excited to launch this campaign as it will allow us to connect directly with people in our community who want to lend their voice, their skills, and their passion to the the daily work of advancing women’s rights. We welcome everyone who shares our guiding principles to become a member, and I especially encourage people who have wondered how they could get involved or who want to stay up to date on opportunites for activism to join us now.”

Becoming a member of the SJSOWC allows you to take an active role in the fight for equality, rights, and justice in Newfoundland and Labrador. Members will be provided with opportunities to join the SJSOWC at events, take part in training opportunities, contribute their expertise or time, contribute to policy positions, and help support and spread awareness of causes and campaigns.

Annual memberships range in cost from $20 to $5. Both individuals and groups are invited to apply for membership at https://sjwomenscentre.ca/join/


Media Contact:
Jenny Wright, Executive Director, SJSWC


The St. John’s Status of Women Council/Women’s Centre is a feminist organization that since 1972 is continually working to achieve equality and justice through political activism, community collaboration and the creation of a safe and inclusive space for all women in the St. John’s area.
Today, the SJSOWC operates The Women’s Centre, Marguerites Place Supportive Housing Program, and Safe Harbour Outreach Project. It recently launched Right Here, Right Now, an innovative mental health initiative that provides walk-in counselling for all women.



FemFestNL 2.0 Safer Space Policy

FemFestNL 2.0 Safer Space Policy

FemFest NL has made an explicit decision to prioritize voices of people who experience oppression, to challenge oppressive culture, and emphasize the empowerment of marginalized individuals. FemFest NL events, and all affiliated programming is a designated safer space. FemFest NL is dedicated to making all of our events a safer space for all women and anyone who has experienced gender oppression; particularly Indigenous women, women of colour, LGBTQI2S+ folks, non-binary and gender non-conforming people.

According to the Safe Space Network, a Safe Space is a place where anyone can relax and be able to fully express themselves, without fear of being made to feel uncomfortable, unwelcome, or unsafe on account of biological sex, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, cultural background, religious affiliation or spiritual belief, age, physical or mental ability, family status, source of income, real of perceived socioeconomic status, or lived experience. FemFest NL asks us all to be aware of language, behavior, and to consider if it might be offensive or presumptuous towards others. This is not a space for violence, for touching without consent, for intolerance of religious or spiritual beliefs or lack-thereof. If you experience language or behaviour that perpetuates discrimination, please notify a designated Safe Person or member of the FemFest NL committee. These incidences will be addressed by FemFest NL, and people may be asked to leave.

FemFest NL encourages the expression of different opinions, choices and tactics. This means as a community we must work hard not to silence each other; and also that some voices must be given more of a platform than others. We are asking that we work through these possible conflicts or disconnects as a group in this space of learning. When we disagree, let us do it in a way where we can hear each other, and communicate with care while respecting and considering context. This means also engaging with people outside of academia, non-profit sectors and relating in honest, non-discriminatory, and compassionate ways. As a community, we can work to develop safer spaces for us all.

Things we can all do to create a safer space:

  • Respect people’s physical, emotional, and spiritual boundaries.
  • Respect pronouns and ask before assuming pronouns
  • Be aware that raising your voice or other aggressive body language may be understood as abusive behavior by others.
  • Respect people’s differing opinions, beliefs, and view points.
  • Be responsible for your own actions. Be aware that your actions do have an effect on others despite what your intentions may be.
  • Identify what makes a space safer for you.
  • Be mindful and acknowledge that cultural differences exist, while working to embrace them
  • Honor that safety looks different for everyone.

Adapted from Black Futures Now Toronto: Safer Spaces Policy

Safe Space Network: http://safespacenetwork.tumblr.com/Safespace

FemFestNL 2.0 Call for Submissions


FemFestNL is a festival of all things feminist, including concerts, film screenings, readings – to be held in downtown St. John’s. We are asking you to help shape the conference through a call for submissions!

When: August 11th to 13th, 2017

Where: The Space, Harbour Drive, St. John’s

Who we are: A committee of feminist organizations, students and activists who are organizing FemFest NL – a feminist conference to take place in St. John’s. It will be carried out from August 11th-13th, 2017 with a two-day forum (August 12th and 13th) with panel discussions and lectures, to happen at The Space.

FemFestNL prioritizes the voice and experience of women in our community. We welcome submissions from all women (trans, intersex, cis, 2S) and all those who experience gendered oppression (including non-binary and gender non-conforming people) and all those who identify as women for the purpose of political organizing.

FemFestNL events are open to everyone.

For this conference, will be accepting proposals for panel discussions, workshops, and interactive sessions based around feminist organizing, community activism and political action in Newfoundland and Labrador. We want to know how our community does direct political action, how they work to create community solidarity and how we can share these skills with each other.

What we would like from you: Your name and organization (if affiliated) with short two sentence bios, proposed topic, session type (panel, TED Talk, workshop, roundtable, etc.), and length of session, how many presenters (and their names and short bios if already planned).

We are prioritizing submissions focused on Feminist activism:

Direct action

Political action

Community solidarity 


Submissions open from June 24th to July 15th, 2017 (12 pm NL standard time)
Please submit to: nlfemfest@gmail.com

For Immediate Release: The St. John’s Status of Women Council implements Domestic Violence Leave Policy

For Immediate Release

May 29th, 2017

St. John’s, NL

The St. John’s Status of Women Council implements Domestic Violence Leave Policy

The St. John’s Status of Women Council (SJSOWC) has created and implemented a Domestic Violence Leave Policy within their organization and encourages public, private business and community organizations to adopt a similar policy.

According to the Canadian Labour Congress report, Domestic Violence at Work, “Over 80 percent of domestic violence victims report that their work performance was negatively affected.  Absenteeism and poor work performance can leave victims vulnerable to discipline, and some even lose their jobs.”

The SJSOWC is also working with the NL Federation of Labour to create change at a provincial level, advocating for Domestic Violence Leave Legislation in Newfoundland and Labrador which would provide paid leave for employees experiencing domestic violence through amendments to Labour and Employment standards legislation.

Jenny Wright, Executive Director of the St John’s Status of Women Council:

“I am very encouraged that we will have domestic violence legislation in our province soon. In the interim, community organizations and business can easily adopt their own in house policy to protect their employees who are experiencing or fleeing domestic violence. And, we are here to help.”

The SJSOWC Domestic Violence Leave Policy provides 3 days paid leave, for employees experiencing domestic violence which can be taken at once or in increments to attend to legal, health, housing and childcare needs.

Mary Shortall, President of the NL Federation of Labour and Chair of the SJSOWC:

“This is a very important issue for our members. Domestic Violence at work impacts workers and employers. While we work with our affiliates to address this issue at the bargaining table, we are also working closely with our partners in the broader community so that all workers can have the legislative protection they need when domestic violence comes to the workplace.”

Media contact:

Jenny Wright, Executive Director, St. John’s Status of Women Council


Mary Shortall, President, Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour


The St. John’s Status of Women Council/Women’s Centre is a feminist organization that since 1972 is continually working to achieve equality and justice through political activism, community collaboration and the creation of a safe and inclusive space for all women in the St. John’s area.

The Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour (NLFL) represents 25 affiliated unions, 500 union locals and 65,000 working women and men in every sector of our economy, in every community in our Province.


PANSOW: Open Letter in Support of Bill C-16

The Provincial Action Network on the Status of Women (PANSOW) is in support of Bill C-16, to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code to add gender identity and gender expression to the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination.

Bill C-16 also amends the Criminal Code to extend the protection against hate propaganda set out in that Act to any section of the public that is distinguished by gender identity or expression and to clearly set out that evidence that an offence was motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on gender identity or expression constitutes an aggravating circumstance that a court must take into consideration when it imposes a sentence.

People who are transgender (trans) experience discrimination, harassment and violence because of their gender identity or gender expression.  People who are trans, two-spirit, and/or gender non-conforming are vital members of our communities, and yet continue to experience profound marginalization and alarming rates of violence. Beyond Bill C-16 we must continue:

to make schools safe for trans students and students questioning their gender identity;

to tear down barriers to employment for trans people and create safer workplaces;

to ensure access to affordable and appropriate healthcare services;

to work with law enforcement to improve training and responses to crimes committed against trans people.

As a network of Women’s Centres throughout the province of Newfoundland and Labrador we fiercely strive for gender equity and this includes gender equality for trans women and being allied in support of all transgender, two-spirit and gender non-conforming people in our communities. We are committed to being trans inclusive, and to value and grow through the voice and leadership of trans people.

We call on all Women’s Centres and women-serving organizations across Canada to ensure our work is always human rights based, including the dismantling of binary and heteronormative discourses, and the inclusion of trans women throughout our organizations.

To feminist organizations in Newfoundland and Labrador who wish to join us in support of Bill C-16 and co-sign this letter, please contact us.

In solidarity,

Co-Chair Janice Kennedy

Executive Director BSG Status of Women


Co-Chair Jenny Wright

Executive Director, St. John’s Status of Women


PANSOW is a network of all Status of Women Councils of Newfoundland and Labrador. PANSOW applies a ‘provincial lens’ to issues of equality and ensures a public voice for women from a non-partisan, grassroots, and feminist perspective. 


“They feel heard. They feel relief. They feel hope.”

As a counsellor, it is staggering sometimes to see the “before and after” of a counselling session. Many women have shared with us that it’s difficult to get in the door but once they do it is unlike any other counselling experience they have had. They feel heard. They feel relief. They feel hope. But what are women saying about getting in the door?

Working up the courage to walk in the door can take weeks. even months. Why is that? Sometimes it seems daunting to reach out and accept help. The process is unknown as well as the location and that can be intimidating. Some women have had other therapeutic experiences that have been negative.  Women also have said that “other people” need the service more than they do and it’s free – so that’s too good to be true.

Counselling can be a vulnerable experience but it can also be empowering. It is meant as a time for you to explore ideas and practices that will support your struggles and concerns. The process is about hearing and supporting you and making a plan, not judging you or fixing you. You deserve service that works for your life. Women are the backbone of families and when we are mentally healthy our relationships are better. Drop in counselling is first and foremost a service to support women wherever they are in their lives.

So what is drop in counselling? Well, you can just drop in. You don’t need an appointment. You don’t need a referral. The most a woman has ever waited to date is an hour. Yeah, it might sound too good to be true but every Tuesday and Wednesday (12-5) you can drop by the Women’s Centre and we will be here to meet you with no strings attached. If you want to come back, we welcome you. If one session is enough, that’s your choice. We have built a program to serve women in whatever way they need it. So come on by!

Dana Warren, BSW, RSW