Sault Ste. Marie MP Terry Sheehan announced today that the federal government is allocating $25,000 each to support Algoma Family Services and Phoenix Rising.
The funding comes from the $50 million COVID-19 Economic Response Plan to assist programs and organizations providing support women and families fleeing violence.
"These funds ensure swift and decisive action to address gaps in resources and services in the Sault. By going directly to Algoma Family Services and Phoenix Rising, these funds support the continuation of timely, compassionate and life-saving supports," states MP Terry Sheehan in a news release.
Full text of the news release follows:
The COVID‑19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for survivors of sexual and domestic violence and the organizations that serve them. As we asked Canadians to stay home to protect public health, we also recognized that home is not a safe place for everyone. That is why our government acted immediately to support women and children fleeing gender-based violence, including front-line organizations here in Sault Ste. Marie.
Women’s shelters, sexual assault centres and women’s organizations in the riding of Sault Ste. Marie continue to provide essential services every day to survivors of gender-based violence. In these unprecedented times, there is a need for additional resources to ensure the continuity and sustainability of these services.
Today, having heard the voices of those most deeply affected by the pandemic, Terry Sheehan, Member of Parliament for Sault Ste. Marie and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (FedNor) is pleased to announce $25,000 each in support of Algoma Family Services and Phoenix Rising.
The funding will allow Algoma Family Services and Phoenix Rising to continue providing essential services and supports during the COVID-19 pandemic and ensure that vulnerable members of our community have a safe place to turn. Across the country, nearly 1000 similar organizations have received funding to help them through this difficult time.
Support for these critical organizations builds on the work our government has already undertaken to advance gender-equality and address gender-based violence. As part of the COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, $50 million was allocated to support organizations providing services to women and their families fleeing violence, $40 million of which is flowing through Women and Gender Equality Canada. Recognizing the critical role they play in creating a stronger Canada, since 2015 we have provided more than $230 million in dedicated funding to women’s and equity-seeking organizations across the country and are supporting more than 500 organizations with multi-year funding.
“Gender-based violence remains an intolerable scourge in Canada, one that has been exacerbated by COVID-19. That’s why our government moved swiftly to ensure that 1000 organizations providing services to 3 million women and children fleeing violence could access the support they needed to keep their doors open. I am deeply grateful to those working tirelessly to support some of the most vulnerable as they navigate this challenging time. As we move into the next phase of this crisis, our government will continue to focus on helping those who need it most, including ensuring that women and others hit hardest are at the centre of our recovery.” - The Honourable Maryam Monsef, P.C., M.P., Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development
“COVID-19 has touched all of our lives in Canada, but we must be mindful that facing the greatest risk are the most vulnerable, including women experiencing violence and their children. These funds ensure swift and decisive action to address gaps in resources and services in the Sault. By going directly to Algoma Family Services and Phoenix Rising, these funds support the continuation of timely, compassionate and life-saving supports.” - Terry Sheehan, Member of Parliament for Sault Ste. Marie
"Algoma Family Services is grateful to receive this funding for the purchase of supplies and new technology. Algoma Family Services offers Violence Against Women Counselling and Child Witness Services, to women and children exposed to domestic violence. This funding will allow us to improve the way we deliver virtual individual and group sessions and to safely offer in-person services. For information on how to access services call AFS at 705-945-5050." - Sandie Leith, M.S.W., RSW director of services, Algoma Family Services