Government of Canada Supports Project to Prevent and Address Abuse in the Atlantic Region

News release

Funding will support those who have experienced, are experiencing, or are at-risk of experiencing violence.

January 19, 2023 | Fredericton, New Brunswick | Public Health Agency of Canada

Family violence and gender-based violence are serious public health issues that are strongly linked to mental health concerns and can have long-lasting consequences for survivors and for those close to them. These issues touch families in all parts of Canada, and include many different forms of physical, sexual and emotional abuse and neglect. We are committed to supporting all survivors of family and gender-based violence and safeguarding the health and safety of those at risk.

Today, Élisabeth Brière, Parliamentary Secretary to the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, announced $598,272 of funding to the University of New Brunswick to adapt and test the effectiveness of an advocacy intervention program to support women in midlife and older from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island who experience intimate partner violence.

This funding comes at a critical time as the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated vulnerabilities that place older adults at higher risk for elder abuse, including social isolation, loneliness, and mental health challenges such as depression and anxiety.

Today's investment is an important step in the right direction. We will continue doing whatever it takes to prevent elder abuse and other forms of family and gender-based violence, support survivors, and break the cycle of violence in families and communities from coast to coast to coast.

Quotes

"Elder abuse touches all communities across Canada, but some families are disproportionately affected. The funding announced today will help to bridge the gaps in services by making it easier for older adults to access the culturally relevant, and effective services they need. This investment is an important step forward, but we know we have more to do. We will continue to take action to help prevent family violence in all its forms and support those impacted."

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

"I saw first hand the repercussion that family and gender-based violence had on our communities. The physical, psychological and emotional consequences are durable. This intervention program by the University of New Brunswick will be a great tool to guide and equip women in Atlantic Canada who face intimate partner violence."

Élisabeth Brière
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

"Family violence and gender-based violence are serious public health issues that are strongly linked to both physical and mental health concerns and can have long-lasting consequences for survivors and those around them. The Government of Canada will continue working to prevent family and gender-based violence, support survivors, and break the cycle of violence in families and communities from coast to coast to coast."

Jenica Atwin
Member of Parliament for Fredericton, New Brunswick

"Senior abuse has harmed too many older Canadians for far too long, and more people are at risk as the population continues to age. Our government is working to strengthen how we combat senior abuse in all its forms. Today's announcement will help ensure women, including senior women are safe and protected from gender-based violence in communities across Canada."

Darren Fisher
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Seniors

"UNB has been supporting collaborative, action-oriented research on family violence, like the AIM project, through the Muriel McQueen Fergusson Centre for Family Violence Research for 30 years. We are grateful to the Public Health Agency of Canada for funding this important research that seeks to improve the health of women in midlife and older who experience domestic and intimate partner violence through adapting and evaluating a new intervention program. The findings about the effectiveness of this innovative intervention will aid in further development, scale-up and spread of the program throughout the Atlantic region, creating positive change across our communities."

Dr. David MaGee
Vice-President Research at the University of New Brunswick (UNB)

Quick Facts

  • Older adult abuse is known to be associated with serious health and psychosocial consequences such as premature mortality, poor physical and mental health, diminished quality of life, and increased rates of emergency services use, hospitalization, and nursing home placement.
  • Loneliness and depression can increase an individual's susceptibility to elder abuse and increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. Elder abuse cases are expected to increase substantially over the next two decades in proportion with projected older adult population growth.

Related Links

Contacts

Maja Staka
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health
343-552-5568

Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada
613-957-2983
media@hc-sc.gc.ca

Public Inquiries:
613-957-2991
1-866-225-0709

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