Often it takes a tragedy to seek a remedy. Such was the genesis of White Ribbon.
On the afternoon of December 6 1989, Marc Lépine, a student at École Polytechnique de l’Université de Montréal, massacres 14 of his fellow female students.
These women were:
Geneviève Bergeron, Annie Turcotte, Nathalie Croteau, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Hélène Colgan, Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz, Annie St-Arneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Michèle Richard, Barbara Daigneault and Maud Haviernick.
Marc Lépine’s actions traumatised a nation and brought the issue of violence against women to the forefront of our collective consciousness.
In response, a group of men in Toronto, Jack Layton, Ron Slusser and Michael Kaufman, decided to speak out and work to stop men’s violence against women. In 1991 they initiated a male-led movement known as White Ribbon, with an annual awareness-raising event (White Ribbon Day) held between 25 November and 6 December.
White Ribbon is now an international effort in over 57 countries, of men and boys working to end violence against women.