Kamloops Women's Resource Centre closes doors November 1, 2006

Thursday, November 2 2006

Society calls on BC Government to provide emergency funding to BC?s Women?s Centres

After 27 years of service to women and their families, in Kamloops and the surrounding communities, the Kamloops Women?s Resource Centre (KWRC) is unable to keep operating any longer. It will officially close its doors on November 1, 2006.

While the KWRC previously provided service to nearly 3,000 women and girls per year, the BC Government cut of 100% of Women?s Centres? operating funding in March 2004. This funding was small ? $47,174 per Women?s Centre - but it represented the only source of operating funding available to Women?s Centres in BC.

Without operating funding, the KWRC became unable to provide the services previously offered to the community, such as support groups, one-to-one support, crisis intervention, advocacy, and many other services. Many women accessing the KWRC brought issues related not only of gender-based violence, but also gender-based poverty, gender discrimination, and other Human Rights-related issues. The KWRC, and other Women?s Centres, have also played a vital role in advocating for systemic changes that would enable a more equal and just society for all BC?s citizens, regardless of gender.

This cut, along with many other cuts and policy changes by the BC Government, represent a dramatic shift away from equality and justice in BC. Even the United Nations has criticized BC for its downgrading of women and girls? equality rights in BC. However, the BC Government has remained determined to silence those who would speak up about injustice towards our most vulnerable citizens, which has included silencing Women?s Centres.

Many Women?s Centres in BC are in similarly difficult financial circumstances and are struggling for survival ? a direct fallout of BC
Government cutbacks. Kitimat and Fort Nelson have already been forced to close their Women?s Centres, and Victoria is also scheduled to close.
The Kamloops Women?s Resource Group Society, the mother society of the KWRC, calls on the Government of BC to provide emergency funding to all Women?s Centres which are in financial crisis, including the KWRC, and to restore and enhance funding to Women?s Centres across British Columbia.

For More Information, Contact:

Trish Archibald
371-5568 (w) or 828-0640 (h)

Jasmin Wright

Heather Robinson

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