Feminist Research for Positive Change: the FREDA Centre
On December 6, 1989, 14 women were murdered in an act of gender-based violence at l’École Polytechnique in Montreal. For over two decades now, this sombre anniversary has been officially marked as the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. This is a day when we are asked to not only reflect, but also to take positive action in the name of women and girls across Canada.
The events of that day prompted the federal government to establish five research centres for the collaborative study of violence against women, funded by Health Canada and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. One of these centres was the FREDA (Feminist Research, Education, Development and Action) Centre, established in 1992 as a partnership between Simon Fraser University, the University of British Columbia, and the Vancouver Community Research Centre.
Now operating out of the SFU School of Criminology under the direction of professor Margaret Jackson, the FREDA Centre undertakes and promotes action-based research on the violence Canadian women and children continue to experience. The research is carried out in concert with grassroots community organizations, frontline service providers and policy makers, and is aimed at empowering these groups to take transformative action.