Schreiner pens open letter to Ford calling for urgent action to address situation at Western University
September 16, 2021
Please see the full open letter as a PDF.
TORONTO — This afternoon, Ontario Green Leader Mike Schreiner sent an open letter to Doug Ford in response to the recent allegations of drugging, sexual assault, and gender-based violence at Western university.
“Many students, families and Ontarians are feeling scared and hopeless in light of these disturbing reports. They are looking for direction, support and justice,” Schreiner wrote.
“Premier, I am asking you to immediately convene a taskforce to address sexual violence against women at university campuses.
“When it comes to community safety and well-being, Ontarians look to their governments for leadership. It is the government’s responsibility to speak out and address the situation.”
Schreiner also called on Ford to reinstate Ontario’s Expert Panel on Violence Against Women that his government previously disbanded, as well as provide adequate funding for rape crisis centres. He also highlighted the need for more funding for sexual violence education and accessible mental health services on campus.
Surveys show that 70 per cent of those surveyed at Western reported being sexually harassed. And In the 2017-2018 academic year, nearly one in three respondents at Western said they had been sexually assaulted.
“This is an issue that affects all of us. As parents, as members of the community, as Ontarians,” Schreiner closed.
“I’m available to meet with you to discuss how we can immediately take action to address this distressing situation.”