I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships: A participatory campaign that opposes violence in all its forms

Quebec, October 2, 2017 – In recognition of the International Day of Non-Violence and of Anti-Bullying Week, à cœur d’homme - Réseau d'aide aux hommes pour une société sans violence, the Regroupement des organismes ESPACE du Québec (ROEQ), RÉZO – Santé et mieux-être des hommes gais et bisexuels, cis et trans, theQLN - For the social and political visibility of sexually diverse women,and Without a Yes, It’s a No! are launching the second edition of the I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships campaign. Focused on raising public awareness, the campaign promotes healthy, non-violent, and egalitarian relationships between all individuals.

 

The second edition of this bilingual and participative campaign is focused on opposing violence in all its forms. I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships / Je m’affiche pour des rapports égalitaires will be taking place throughout the month of October, 2017. “Our goal is to get people to show their public support for equality by participating in different online actions. For example, posting a photo of themselves with the campaign’s logo #ForEgalitarianRelationships or by writing a text on the subject,” explained Rémi Bilodeau, Executive Director of à cœur d’homme. “We want to promote egalitarian relationships between everyone, regardless of their age, sexual identity, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, or religion. Our goal is to create a positive ripple effect in support of egalitarian relationships. We want people to take a position and to reflect on their own behaviour and the society they want to help create,” said Valérie Meunier, President of à cœur d’homme. “Violence can be understood as an unequal power relationship and a desire to exert control over another person. Over the years, society’s tolerance for violence has steadily declined, in no small part thanks to persistent efforts to raise awareness. Clearly, we need to continue down that path. The more we promote egalitarian relationships, the less society will tolerate unequal ones. That is why this campaign is so important,” Rémi Bilodeau added.

 

The first edition of I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships reached more than 160,000 people in 2016 and resulted in nearly 2,000 actions being taken #ForEgalitarianRelationships. Building on that success, à cœur d’hommedecided to renew the campaign for 2017. This year’s campaign is being launched in partnership with several other organizations, recognized for their commitment to the promotion of equality: the Regroupement des organismes ESPACE du Québec, RÉZO, the QLN,and Without a Yes, It’s a No!  “Emphasizing egalitarian relationships means promoting healthy relationships within couples, between friends, in families, among colleagues, and between everyone in our society. We believe that egalitarian relationships concern us all,” concluded Valérie Meunier.

 

The I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships campaign and its partners invite everyone, from all walks of life, to become an ambassador for egalitarian relationships and to stand #ForEgalitarianRelationships throughout the month of October. To get more information and get involved, visit www.standforequality.ca.

 

Quotes

 

The ROEQ is proud be a partner of the I Stand for Egalitarian Relationships campaign for the second year running. “Because acts of aggression against children are, in reality, acts of domination taken by someone who has authority and power over a child, ESPACE believes firmly that the promotion of egalitarian relationships—which are based on respect and exclude the abuse of power—stand as the foundation for preventing violence against children. It is critical that we cultivate egalitarian relationships from very early childhood, even between children themselves! Doing so has important benefits for society as a whole,” explained Nancy Beauseigle, coordinator of the Regroupement des organismes ESPACE du Québec.

 

"We fully support the campaign for egalitarian relationships and have been promoting their importance for years. This is something that we hold very close to our hearts. Gay and bisexual men, both cis and trans, face discrimination every day because of their sexual orientation, or because they don’t match typically masculine stereotypes. If we lived in a society that had egalitarian relationships between the genders, no one would have to face stigmatization because they present characteristics that are considered feminine, which society considers undesirable. This is why egalitarian relationships between all individuals in our society are so important,” declared Frédérick Pronovost, co-director of Research and Development at RÉZO.

 

« As an advocacy organization that includes both equity and respect in its founding values, egalitarian relationships are incredibly important to the QLN - For the social and political visibility of sexually diverse women. Every day, people are engaged in multiple and overlapping relationships: as colleagues, friends, and family. Yet many of these relationships are unequal, disrespectful, invasive, and even violent. Too often, it is women who are subject to these injustices—particularly women who identify on the spectrum of sexual diversity and who are marginalized by our society. The QLN is proud to stand for egalitarian relationships between men and women, just as it stands for egalitarian relationships between women. Although these relationships can seem egalitarian, we sometimes ignore the pain that can hide behind that appearance », specified Julie Antoine, Executive Director of the QLN.  

 

« Without a Yes, Its a No! is proud to Stand for Egalitarian Relationships. Through the discussions it leads about consent and sexual violence, it works to eliminate rape culture on university and college campuses. Egalitarian relationships are fundamental to that effort: at work, at school, within a couple, and in every relationship we maintain. By respecting ourselves and others, by behaving and communicating non-violently, we contribute towards making a better society and a better future for the generations to come. #ForEgalitarianRelationships #WithoutaYesItsaNo», added Isabelle Laforest, responsible for training of Without a Yes, It’s a No!