As women age, they are more likely to be living in poverty than men. This disparity is due to several factors, including the gender wage gap and women being more likely to experience career disruptions, such as caring for loved ones. These factors contribute to a lack of personal income and savings available to women over the age of 55 and older. Older women may experience additional barriers to economic security in later life due to their experiences of gender-based violence, including economic abuse and employment sabotage.
This project will raise awareness of the financial and social needs of women over the age of 55. Through collaboration with key stakeholders, including older women with lived experience and community agencies, the project will develop and deliver education and capacity building to improve awareness of family violence and intimate partner violence among different populations of older women.
While trauma-informed practices have become more widely used across social services, the recognition of intersecting trauma and the integration of anti-racism remains a gap within and across sectors. Trauma from gender-based violence, community violence, and racism are compounded, and discrimination and fear of discrimination can be a barrier to accessing services.
This project will enhance the capacity of organizations to respond to the needs of racialized women survivors of gender-based violence who are experiencing racism and trauma, by offering culturally safe frontline services. The project will collaborate with stakeholders to incorporate principles of anti-racism and trauma-informed practice, thereby improving service delivery and access for racialized survivors.
How can rental housing work better for survivors? Gender-based violence is a common cause of homelessness among women and gender-diverse people in Toronto and survivors face unique challenges to housing.
This research report examines what it takes to support survivors as successful renters. The report contains findings from community-based research undertaken with women and gender-diverse people who have experienced gender-based violence and currently live in or are trying to access private rental housing in Toronto. The report shares their experiences and unique challenges to housing, including hidden homelessness, discrimination from landlords, and income insecurity.
Women and gender diverse people in the criminal justice system have high rates of violence and trauma in their lifetime. Trauma can be both a direct and indirect pathway into criminalized activities and is often reproduced and worsened by experiences in the justice system. The experience of trauma and criminalization can be compounded by other intersecting identities, including race. Racialized women and gender diverse people are overrepresented in the criminal justice system and are the fastest growing prison population in Canada.
This research explores the relationship between trauma and criminalization among racialized women and highlights the dangerous stigma they face as a result. It discusses how intimate partner violence can be a pathway into the criminal justice system for survivors, and how the judgment surrounding criminalization remains a barrier to fleeing violence and resolving trauma. The report also speaks to what is needed to improve access to services for racialized survivors with experiences of criminalization.
Intimate partner violence is closely connected to women’s economic security, including their income, employment, and housing. Research has shown that intimate partner violence both directly and indirectly impacts survivors’ ability to work and maintain employment. This can be compounded by other factors, including gender, race, and age. Racialized women face systemic barriers to economic equality and are more likely to be in precarious and low-income employment than non-racialized women.
This research report draws on qualitative data gathered through surveys and interviews with racialized survivors. The report explores the experiences of racialized survivors in accessing and maintaining employment. It discusses the impact that trauma from racism and intimate partner violence has on women’s employment and what is needed to better support racialized survivors to access and maintain meaningful employment.
Economic abuse can be any form of financial control, abuse, mistreatment, and neglect. Senior immigrant women can have unique experiences of economic abuse because of intersecting identities of gender, age and immigration experience. Each of these have been known to impact experiences of gender-based violence and help seeking.
This leaflet provides information for senior immigrant women on identifying and seeking help for economic abuse. The leaflet is available in Amharic, Arabic, English, Farsi, Korean, Punjabi, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Tagalog, Traditional Chinese and Urdu.
Senior immigrant women occupy intersecting identities of gender, age and immigration. Each of these have been known to impact experiences of gender-based violence and help seeking. Furthermore, these intersections can create specific risk factors related to economic abuse.
This report examines the dynamics and experiences of economic abuse among senior immigrant women. The first part of this report explores the existing literature on economic abuse among senior immigrant women. The second part of this report contains findings from community-based research undertaken with service providers and senior immigrant women with lived experience of economic abuse.
Across Ontario, women, girls and gender diverse people are disproportionately impacted by violence, especially Indigenous, Black, trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary people, immigrant, refugee, and non-status women and women living with disabilities.
When we speak to women and gender diverse people experiencing violence across Ontario, we hear about the many systemic inequalities, risks and barriers they face daily. Women and gender diverse people are at a greater risk of violence in their homes, on the street and at work. They are unable to live free from violence because of a lack of access to income, decent work and affordable housing.
The pandemic has exacerbated inequalities and intensified gender-based violence. Because of this, we only see the need for gender-based violence services, affordable housing and access to justice will only increase over the coming years. That’s why now more than ever, we need an Ontario government that is committed to prioritizing the safety of women and gender diverse people.
Call to action:
We’re calling on provincial political parties to commit to ending gender-based violence in Ontario with a priority on increased investment, coordinated strategy and systemic change. We’re asking parties to commit to:
Measures put in place to mitigate COVID-19, such as stay at home orders, have put families experiencing intimate partner violence at greater risk. In particular, young women and women with children have been identified at greater risk for increased violence, housing instability, and decreased service provision.
The project will investigate patterns of violence and housing instability, and examine changes to experiences and services during the pandemic. The project will undertake a realist informed review of literature and conduct primary research. The project will also work closely with survivors to create digital narratives. Using the knowledge created, the project will build collaboration with policy makers, service providers and other knowledge users.
The right to housing is more than just a roof over one’s head. It is the right to safe, affordable and permanent housing. Survivors living in violent situations are experiencing a violation to their right to housing. Survivors are also at a high risk of homelessness and face a range of barriers to obtaining housing.
This infographic highlights the connections between right to housing, violence against women and homelessness.