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Source: University of Windsor!OpenDocument

2006 Distinguished Visitor combats violence against women

October 11, 2006

ONTARIO, WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 11, 2006) Ė The University of Windsorís
Distinguished Visitor in Womenís Studies program has selected feminist
author, activist and visionary Lee Lakeman as its 2006 Distinguished Visitor
in Womenís Studies. Lakeman will be welcomed at a 9 a.m. kickoff event
Friday, October 13 in the boardroom of the University of Windsorís CAW
Student Centre.

The program, celebrating its sixth anniversary, was founded by The Friends
of Womenís Studies, a group representing many facets of the Windsor
community whose mandate is to encourage and foster the Womenís Studies
program at the University of Windsor. Each year the group invites a
noteworthy woman who has demonstrated a commitment to working with and on
behalf of woman, to hold the position of Distinguished Visitor. This
prestigious appointment is designed to honour the Visitorís contributions to
social justice and includes a series of public events designed to allow
students, faculty and community members to exchange ideas and experiences
with these high profile Canadian women. Past recipients have included
Michele Landsberg, Mary Jo Leddy, and Akua Benjamin.

Lee Lakeman has worked to combat violence against women both nationally and
internationally for more than 30 years. A teacher by training, Lakeman
founded the Woodstock Womenís Emergency Centre in the early 1970s after
converting her communal home into a transition house for abused woman. In
1978 she joined the Vancouver Rape Relief and Womenís Shelter which was
established in 1973. The shelter lost its government funding in 1982 after
refusing to allow the federal government access to files in order to protect
the anonymity of victims. Lakeman is a member of the World March of Women
and has helped establish and foster transition houses in Japan, Indonesia,
Russia, India, Nepal, and Bangladesh and has served as special advisor to
Justice Minister Alan Rock during a UN meeting in Cairo on violence against

Lakeman has published and contributed to a number of articles on the subject
including, Canadaís Promises to Keep: The Charter and Violence Against
Women, an inquiry undertaken by the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault
Centres. The study examines 100 criminally assaulted women who used the
justice system in 11 locations across Canada and concludes that obligations
to Canadian women under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms are often ignored
and/or violated by prosecutors and those responsible for emergency services.

Distinguished Visitor in Womenís Studies Week 2006 will feature a series of
lectures by Lakeman on topics ranging from the special needs of immigrant
women to war, debt, and the trafficking of women. Highlights of the week
include the annual Take Back the Night Rally and March Saturday, October 14,, and the annual community dinner at 5:30
p.m., Thursday, October 19 at the Caboto Club. For more information visit
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CONTACT: Lori Koutros
Manager, News Services
University of Windsor
(519) 973-7001
Cell: (519) 564-9908



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