Thank you to all who attended the Public Forum on Circles of Support and Accountability, presented by CoSA-Ottawa and the Criminalization and Punishment Education Project (CPEP) on February 10th, 2015, at the Ottawa Public Library (main branch). The event was well attended by approximately 100 interested guests who came to learn about CoSA’s mandate of “no more victims” and “no one is disposable” and hear speakers discuss the important work being done by CoSA staff and volunteers in Ottawa and beyond in promoting safety and reducing harm.
Attendees also learned about the current funding crisis facing CoSA-Ottawa (and most CoSA sites in Canada), placing it in jeopardy of closing on April 1, 2015 if funding cannot be secured.
Please help CoSA-Ottawa avoid closing its doors by signing a letter to Public Safety Steven Blaney requesting that federal funding for CoSA be continued (Lttr to Minister Blaney).
Speakers at the Forum included: Susan Love, CoSA-Ottawa Program Coordinator; Bob Cormier, CoSA-Ottawa Board Member; Steve Sullivan, Executive Director, Ottawa Victim Services; Justin Piché, Professor of Criminology, University of Ottawa and Adina Ilea, CPEP Member, who moderated the event. Testimonials of CoSA Core Members and a CoSA volunteer were read by event organizers.
Here are a few key messages from the forum.
- ”As a victim advocate, I support CoSA because we share the goal of “No More Victims”
- By supporting men coming out of prison, CoSA reduces their risk of re-offending
- CoSA prevents victims which is something that we can all support
- Our community is safer with CoSA in it” Steve Sullivan
- ”Do you believe in building community capacity to prevent harm? Do you believe people can change and grow over the course of their lives?
- At the heart of CoSA’s mission is a resounding ‘yes’ to both questions and the research suggests their work fulfills their aspirations.
- As a new father who doesn’t know what the future holds for my daughter, I want to live in a world where fewer people experience sexual harm and fewer people are treated as disposable because of their worst actions. Such a world requires support for initiatives like CoSA.” Justin Piché