Tea time against violence

At times St. John’s may seem overcaffeinated, but it’s hard to argue with the value of a cup of tea. For Barbie Wadman of the Newfoundland and Labrador Crisis and Prevention Centre, a cup of tea is always an opportunity to get a conversation started.

“Tea has special significance in Newfoundland,” says Wadman. “It’s the first thing we offer visitors to our homes — whether old friends or new. The ritual of drinking tea is such a familiar part of our culture it creates a natural space to build bonds and communicate.”

In that spirit, Wadman and the NLSACPC will be serving tea next Monday night at city hall in support of Violence Prevention month. And everyone’s invited.

According to provincial statistics, of women over the age of 15 in the province, half will experience at least one incident of sexual or physical violence in their lifetime. Roughly 90 per cent of those incidents will not be reported to police.

“Violence issues are tough to talk about and sometimes it’s hard to get people involved in taking action. There is a social stigma around sexual violence in particular, and we want to help break down those barriers.”

During the evening, there will be a viewing of Killing Us Softly 4: Advertising’s Image of Women, a documentary by filmmaker Jean Kilbourne. The film examines the role of advertising in the distortion of femininity, and challenges the audience to engage in the topics of sexism, eating disorders, and gender violence.

The event is free and open to the public, with tea and homemade baked goods provided.

Evening Tea for Violence Prevention is scheduled to take place on Monday, February 4th at the Foran Green Room of city hall. Details can be found at the event’s Facebook page: Evening Tea for Violence Prevention.

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