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March 5, 2015

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March 5, 2015
For Immediate Release

WATERLOO – Wilfrid Laurier University’s Social Innovation Research Group (SIRG) is hosting a symposium, “Everyday: Freedom From Gendered Violence,” March 11 and 12 at Laurier’s Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work in Kitchener. The symposium aims to bring together university and community stakeholders whose efforts are directed at the prevention and response to gendered violence.

“This event is an opportunity to honour the accomplishments of university and community stakeholders dedicated to ending gendered violence in our community,” said Ginette Lafrenière, associate professor, Faculty of Social Work, director of SIRG and director, Manulife Centre for Community Health Research. “It is also an opportunity to celebrate the completion of the Change Project and Bystander Project, which were dedicated to ending gendered violence on our campuses.”

The symposium will feature keynote speakers and panels as well as skill-building workshops that will engage participants in exploring the practical applications of social justice principles to end gendered violence.

March 11 events:

  • A performance by Janice Lee, poet and singer-songwriter.
  • Graduate Students’ Association topic area symposium: an exploration of current issues and hot topics in research. Following presentations by researchers from a variety of disciplines with expertise on the topic of gendered violence, participants will discuss applying research to develop solutions or new directions in furthering our understanding of gendered violence.
  • Keynote speaker Tatyana Fazlalizadeh: a visual artist and producer of the public art series, “Stop Telling Women to Smile: Using Art to Tackle Sexual Harassment.” Fazlalizadeh will discuss her public art series and the complexities of harassment and gendered violence within the intersections of class, race, gender and sexuality.
  • “Women of Resistance” award ceremony.

March 12 events:

  • Keynote speaker Judah Oudshoorn: a professor in Community and Criminal Justice at Conestoga College, a restorative justice mediatior with Correctional Services Canada, and a doctoral student in Social Work at Laurier. Oudshoorn will speak about the role of men in ending male violence on campuses, and the challenge of holding perpetrators accountable while meeting the needs of survivors.
  • Keynote speaker Sonnet L’Abbé: an award-winning poet and essayist and Laurier’s current Edna Staebler Writer-in-Residence. She is the author of two collections of poetry, A Strange Relief and Killarnoe, and the guest editor of Best Canadian Poetry. She has also taught at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies and University of British Columbia, Okanagan.
  • Participant Workshops: topics ranging from engaging male allies, responding to disclosure and micro-aggressions against the LGBTQ community to gendered violence against racialized students. 

The symposium takes place Wednesday, March 11 from 4 p.m. – 9 p.m. and Thursday, March 12 from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at Laurier’s Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work, 120 Duke Street West, Kitchener.  

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Dr. Ginette Lafrenière
Associate Professor
Faculty of Social Work
Director, Social Innovation Research Group

T: 519.884.0710 x5237


Kevin Crowley, Director
Communications & Public Affairs
Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3070



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