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Bill 173: Intimate Partner Violence Epidemic Act passes second reading!

What happened?

On April 10, the Government of Ontario carried Bill 173: Intimate Partner Violence Epidemic Act through a second reading, bringing us one critical step closer to having the province recognize that IPV is what advocates have long said and nearly 100 municipalities have affirmed with their own declarations: an epidemic.

Why now?

Declaring IPV an epidemic was the first of 86 recommendations in the 2022 Culleton, Kuzyk and Warmerdam Inquest Report, which followed the triple femicide of Carol Culleton, Anastasia Kuzyk and Nathalie Warmerdam in 2015 by a man with whom each had a past relationship and who was known in the community as violent.

What’s next?

While this is a significant win for survivors, their families, advocates and organizations on the frontlines, the work to advance meaningful change and investment remains ahead of us all. We also join the calls of partners like Luke’s Place for the province to reconsider its plan for the Justice Committee to undertake extensive research on the impacts of IPV as there is already ample research on which to draw. We cannot delay acting to address this epidemic any longer. We hope to see Bill 173 pass through a third reading and receive Royal Assent, followed by tangible commitments to tackling IPV and GBV. A first, critical step would be reinstating the VAW roundtable which could help the province create an implementation plan to support this declaration.

For now, though, we celebrate this proof that collective advocacy works!

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