31 Things British Columbia Can Do Right Now to End Violence Against Women
16. Ensure women have access to interpretation in interaction with police, courts, social workers and other decision-makers
There is a growing body of research illustrating the previously under-acknowledged prevalence of violence against racialized and migrant women. Women for whom English is not a first language must be provided with access to appropriate interpretation when interacting with police, courts, tribunals, income assistance workers and social worker. Children, family members, and neighbors should never be used as interpreters except where information is required to deal with immediate safety issues. Where a woman speaks some English and it is unclear whether interpretation is required, it is important to err on the side of providing interpretation. Where in-person interpretation is not feasible, telephone services such as CanTalk provide translation services into 154 languages 24 hours a day.
Women in British Columbia have waited too long already. That is why we are offering 31 things that BC’s new Provincial Office of Domestic Violence (PODV) can push for right now to increase safety for women and to bring us closer than we have ever been to ending violence against women once and for all. We are calling for 31 social, economic and legal changes, none of which are unachievable in this province. Some would require very little financial investment, and each of them will save resources in the long term given the high costs of violence against women.
For more information:
Follow The Violence Against Women in Relationship Act – 2. Audit for compliance with BC’s Violence Against Women in Relationship policy
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