December 6th Memorial Service: National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women
Ontario remembers the 14 female engineering students who were murdered at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal on December 6, 1989 by an act of gender-based violence. We also commemorate the missing and murdered Aboriginal women, the trans-women and each and every woman in Ontario and across the world whose lives have been harmed or lost to gender-based violence.
The 14 women at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal, were killed in a gender-based act of violence. They were:
Geneviève Bergeron (born 1968), civil engineering student
Hélène Colgan (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Nathalie Croteau (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Barbara Daigneault (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
Anne-Marie Edward (born 1968), chemical engineering student
Maud Haviernick (born 1960), materials engineering student
Maryse Laganière (born 1964), budget clerk in the École Polytechnique’s finance department
Maryse Leclair (born 1966), materials engineering student
Anne-Marie Lemay (born 1967), mechanical engineering student
Sonia Pelletier (born 1961), mechanical engineering student
Michèle Richard (born 1968), materials engineering student
Annie St-Arneault (born 1966), mechanical engineering student
Annie Turcotte (born 1969), materials engineering student
Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz (born 1958), nursing student
In 1991, the Parliament of Canada declared December 6th to be the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.
The day now represents a time to reflect on the phenomenon of violence against women in our society. It is also a day for communities and individuals to speak out against all forms of violence against women and its impact on victims and their families and friends.
The Ontario government is helping to stop sexual violence and harassment with its Action Plan It’s Never Okay, and the introduction of legislation to help make workplaces, campuses and communities safer.
In Ontario, candlelight vigils, memorial services, and other events are held throughout the province.