MEDIA ADVISORY – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Male Victims of Domestic Violence Open First Toronto Support Group
TORONTO, ON – (June 9, 2016) Toronto’s first support group for male victims of domestic violence has begun meeting at the Canadian Centre for Men and Families (CCMF). Meetings of the initial group of 8 men are facilitated by veteran male trauma psychotherapists Lynne MacDonell and Craig Bolton.
“Domestic violence comes in many faces,” said CCMF Executive Director Justin Trottier. “We’ve long known that domestic violence victims span all ages, races and ethnicities. Now we’re becoming aware they also span all genders and sexual orientations. Yet fathers and their children experiencing abuse often have no place to go.”
Men are significantly underserved in terms of accessing counselling, crisis centres, victims services and domestic abuse shelters, according to the Statistics Canada 2014 General Social Survey on Victimization.
“The experience of being in a violent and abusive relationship left me mentally, emotionally and financially shattered, estranged from my two sons and feeling totally alone,” said Michael Healey. “This new support group is giving me the understanding and the tools to rebuild my life and my relationship with my sons.”
“All victims of violence experience stigma, but men are especially likely to go untreated given male socialization that discourages men from seeking help, and sometimes punishes them when they do,” said Ellen Campbell, Founder and CEO of the Canadian Centre for Abuse Awareness (CCAA), a national organization that has assisted over 200,000 children, women and men affected by abuse.
“We are proud to be partnering with the CCMF on this groundbreaking initiative,” said Campbell.
The CCMF provides individual and group counselling, legal services, referrals to shelters, and access to clothing and other goods for families fleeing abuse. The organization has been invited by social service agencies across Toronto to run workshops in order to assist staff to better support male victims.
Canadian Centre for Men and Families