“The inquiry is replicating the very same dismissive attitude and the same patterns of systemic marginalization that it is supposed to address.”
It is more comfortable to dehumanize and judge women living in the DTES, to rob them of their basic dignity, to tell ourselves that the violence of poverty and abuse is their fault because “they are all hookers and lazy addicts.” The reality is that the DTES, the poorest postal code in Canada, is becoming home to an increasing number of women due to societal dynamics of inequality and oppressive government policies that allow for such inhumane realities to persist. Abdicating our responsibility to transform these injustices does not make them disappear or absolve us of our obligations to humanity. Hopefully one day soon we will learn how to affirm the sacredness of all life before another one is lost. RIP Verna Simmard, Lisa Arlene Francis, Ashley Machiskinic.