Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the Family Violence Death Review Committee’s release of their first case review.
“I want to thank the Family Violence Death Review Committee for their first Case Review Report. The Committee plays an important role in determining how we can prevent family violence deaths. Its current report contains recommendations related to preventing family violence in the work place, additional training for security personnel, wider distribution of materials related to family violence and closer work with stakeholders providing services for newcomers to Canada. These recommendations will be examined by my Ministry and government-wide colleagues to address this issue. We want to learn from this report and from this terrible tragedy.
“If Albertans believe, as our government does, that safe and caring families are the bedrock on which Alberta is built, the issue of family violence should be of great concern to all of us. Though violence may occur within a specific family, its effects do not stay there. The results of family violence migrate into our schools, workplaces and communities. One way or another, we are all affected. That is why we are taking action to address this tragic issue.
“We are addressing family violence on two broad fronts. The first is to ensure that women and children who need to escape family violence have a safe place to go. Women’s shelters play an important role in supporting victims of family violence. In September, we announced a new investment of $15 million annually to provide much needed supports. These include help in accessing available provincial programs and services and specialized child and youth counseling.
“However, as important as shelters are, they are not a solution. They are the measure of how much still needs to be done to address family violence. Prevention is the second key component of our activities.
“We are investing an addition $15 million to support Family and Community Safety Program grants. This is an important investment because prevention activities can only be effective if they help determine and address the root causes of violence.”