News & Initiative Updates

  • Lisa Graham

Safer Communities: Helping women in northwestern B.C. at risk of violence

The Safer Communities Initiative was recently featured in a CBC article for their work with northwestern BC indigenous communities. At the Dze L K'ant Friendship Centre Society in Smithers, B.C. the program has been put forward for all women to help them stay in touch and access help if needed.

"Women have fear. We have fear when we leave. We have fear when we go out. Even after the inquiry, even after all of these recommendations and calls to action, our women are still going missing, so people live in that constant fear," said Quock, referring to the final report from the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

The Safer Communities Initiative, a partnership of Aware360, BC SafetyLink, Telelink and TechnologyHelps, is putting a special focus on protecting indigenous women in the wake of the devastating stories emerging from the Highway of Tears. The Initiative provides a smartphone app and live response agents who can help people in emergency situations twenty-four hours a day.

Kelsey Harmse, Director of Strategic Initiatives for BC SafetyLink, explained, “we see a great need to protect at-risk Canadians and that’s why we’re reaching out to friendships centers and communities to see where our services can help. Having indigenous people on our staff as response agents helps us to gain trust within these communities and provide best-in-class response services.”

Email to request more information on the program.

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