Crisis support for gender-based violence survivors

Press Release

Alberta’s government is partnering with Women and Gender Equality Canada to provide crisis support to Albertans who are experiencing gender-based violence.

When a person is in crisis, they need immediate care. That means knowing who to call in order to be connected directly to the support they need, when they need it.

Crisis hotlines are a lifeline for survivors. Alberta’s government is committed to providing the critical support services survivors need, the moment they need it.

In partnership with Women and Gender Equality Canada, $3 million is being directed to 211 to ensure that the crisis supports Albertans need are there when they need them. This investment will help continue to build a reliable, streamlined 24/7 service that connects Albertans to the resources that serve their urgent needs.

“When a person is in crisis, finding help should not be difficult, confusing or time consuming. If you find yourself in a situation where you need help, this 24/7 service through 211 will help to ensure that you get the help and resources you deserve. I’m proud that we are taking strides in supporting survivors of gender-based violence.”

Tanya Fir, Parliamentary Secretary for Status of Women

This new funding will help improve service co-ordination with the wrap-around supports that gender-based violence survivors need, such as counselling, health care and legal services, among many others.

“211 is a critical resource connecting Albertans to mental health supports and other essential services in their communities. Strengthening 211 is another way we can support survivors of gender-based violence through Alberta’s recovery-oriented system of care for mental health and addiction.”

Nicholas Milliken, Minister of Mental Health and Addiction

“Navigating the social sector is hard. But it’s even more difficult when you’re in crisis and experiencing gender-based violence.

This investment in 211 Alberta will enable us to research the complex network of supports available to Albertans experiencing gender-based violence. With our partners Canadian Mental Health Association-Edmonton and Distress Centre Calgary, we will work with sector leaders to identify gaps and explore opportunities to improve the support navigation process. Together, we can make asking for help easier for those experiencing gender-based violence.”

Rob Yager, President and CEO, United Way of the Alberta Capital Region

“Both of 211 Alberta’s call centres, Canadian Mental Health Association-Edmonton and Distress Centre Calgary are professionally accredited by the Alliance of Information and Referral Services. In addition, 211 is answered by staff who must undergo training and certification through that same accreditor. CMHA and DCC’s crisis lines are also accredited through the American Association of Suicidology and are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Rick Wilson, Minister of Indigenous Relations

Alberta’s government is committed to preventing gender-based violence in our province by shifting to a culture of consent, engaging men and boys, improving our response to gender-based violence and supporting survivors. This funding is an important step towards that commitment.

Quick facts

  • 211 is an essential service that helps Albertans find the right resource at the right time. 211 provides information and referral to a wide range of community, social, health and government services, no matter where they live.
  • As it relates to gender-based violence, 211 helps callers navigate the wraparound supports they may require, including shelters, counselling, health care and legal services.
  • Sexual violence is the most under-reported crime in Canada.
    • It is estimated that 94 per cent of sexual violence survivors do not report their assaults to police.
  • While anyone can experience sexual violence, most incidents occur against women and girls.
    • 47 per cent of survivors in Canada are between the ages of 15 and 24.

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