CAW Men Walk A Mile In Her Shoes
September 22, 2007
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September 22, 2007
As the start of the Walk a Mile In Her Shoes march loomed near in Woodstock Ontario, September 22, 2007, men like CAW Local 88 Plant Chair Mike Van Boekel pondered the one mile trek ahead of them.
Mike Van Boekel
CAW Local 88 Plant Chair
"I'm here today in Woodstock to "Walk A Mile in Her Shoes". It's to raise awareness and hopefully some funds for abused women and to raise awareness within the community and within our local and try and make more men aware of the issues that women face every day in their lives."
Co-Chair for the event, Susan Houston, CAW National Co-ordinator for Employees Equity GM group said that having the men get involved is a key to making the public aware of the existence of sexual abuse and rape in all communities both big and small.
CAW National Co-ordinator For Employee Equity GM Event co-chair
"This is a men's march against rape and what men are doing is walking a mile in our shoes. They are going to walk the walk and then talk the talk."
"It is a difficult issue to get people talking about the issue of rape and sexual assault. So this is a way for us to raise the consciousness of the community; to get men behind the movement. Because women have been in the forefront of this movement for a long time and we need men's voices because rape isn't even a women's issue it's a man's issue."
Following the march which saw over 80 men hobble and wobble around a one mile course, male community leaders urged the public to get involved in fighting sexual assault, rape and gender violence in their community by talking the talk.
Through out the day CAW Local 636 President Ross Gerrie managed to lead the way despite the tight shoes.
Pres. CAW Local 636
"In our work places we say enough is enough. We have harassment policies to look after those issues. And men have come forward in our workplaces to say enough is enough and now it is time for us to say it in our community."
Brenda Boswell Simpson, CAW Local 88 and co-chair of the Walk A Mile In Her Shoes March, said they raised a lot more than they had anticipated.
Brenda Boswell Simpson
CAW Local 88 Event Co-Chair
"We set a goal of about $5,000. We thought if we could bring in $5,000 that would be really amazing. But a rough figure of what we have brought in is about $7,800."
The money will be used for counselling for victims of sexual assault in Woodstock and Oxford County.
CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."