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Take Back The Night 2019: Allyship

Friday, September 20, 2019 - 09:00

Sexual Violence New Brunswick / Violence Sexuelle Nouveau Brunswick (formerly the "Fredericton Sexual Assault Centre") will be organizing Fredericton's 34th annual Take Back The Night and we hope to see you there.

The Take Back the Night Fredericton Committee acknowledges that we gather on the ancestral, unceded lands of the Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqey People. This territory is covered by the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship”, which the Mi’kmaq, Wəlastəkwiyik, and Passmaoddy People signed with the British Crown in 1726. This treaty did not include the surrendering of lands or resources but rather, recognised Mi’kmaq and Wəlastəkwiyik title and established rules for the ongoing relationship between the two nations.

Take Back The Night Fredericton is a public protest that demands action against gender based violence that forces women, non-binary persons, and children to live in fear. This international, annual event is a powerful opportunity to reclaim one's voice and one's right to safety.

The theme this year is "allyship". With this theme choice, it is hoped to highlight how you can be an ally to a survivor of sexual violence and/or gender-based violence. 
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EVENT TIMELINE:
7:45pm – All welcome to gather at City Hall
8:00pm – Opening Remarks
8:15pm – Women-identified/non-binary and children march.
8:15pm – Men-identified/allied are invited to join the Ally Engagement Discussion with White Ribbon Fredericton and to welcome the marchers upon their return.
9:00pm – Special musical presentation by Sisters of the Drum
9:15pm - Conclusion of the March and refreshments
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MARCH ROUTE:
City Hall – Westmorland – George – Regent – Queen – City Hall!
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***Why is it requested that only women-identified/non-binary persons and children march?
The March portion of the event serves as a small window of time and space where women in our community can feel safe, supported, and empowered without the presence of men.
Gender-based violence also disproportionally affects non-binary persons, and non-binary persons are invited to participate in the event as they feel most comfortable, whether that is to march, take part in the Ally Engagement discussion, or to simply be present during the event.
The event is a trans-inclusive space. 

***Message from Bill Patrick of White Ribbon Fredericton:
"The reasons men are not asked to march are several:
FIRST: This is an event for women and children to take back the night. It is male violence that has made the night unsafe. So this is an empowering event for women and children to reclaim the night. When men march alongside women, it can turn us into ‘bodyguards’ and totally undo the empowering nature of the event.
SECOND: When we (men) march, we also erase the gendered dynamic of rape – the fact that rap occurs in the context of patriarchy. Rape occurs when women and children are dis-empowered. This event shines a light on that fact. This empowering march is women and children claiming their right to be safe.
THIRD: Finally, why should men not march in this event? Because the women planning the event said NO. And no means no, when it comes to sexual assault, when it comes to marching in the streets. We men have 364 other days in which to march about the issue. Women have claimed this one night. We need to honour that.”

It is appreciated the support of allies and their dedication to ending gender-based violence. Being present and respectful of the women and non-binary folk at the event is the simplest way to be positively involved.
Allies are invited to take part in the Ally Engagement discussion with White Ribbon Fredericton as the women and non-binary folk march. During this time, allies will have the opportunity to talk about what it means to be a good ally, what you can do right now to support women and non-binary folk, and how patriarchal systems and stigmas negatively impact men.

All are welcome to this public event. Please respectfully enjoy our opening remarks and closing words.

Looking forward to your continued support this year!