It was a chilly morning on the Kainai Nation on Friday and emergency services staff from the Blood Tribe came out in full support of those experiencing domestic violence.
The ninth annual Domestic Violence Awareness Walk put on by the Kainai Women’s Wellness Lodge saw men in the community slip on high-heeled shoes and stroll around the block.
Manager of the Kainai Women’s Wellness Lodge, Doris Lowhorn said seeing officials from the police service and fire department take part is meaningful as it helps spread the message and bring awareness to intimate partner violence.
“Men can walk in those shoes so they get the feeling of what women go through when they’re fleeing,” said Lowhorn.
Lowhorn said the 10-bed women’s shelter helps to provide services to more than 300 women every year.
“With the numbers that we do get throughout the year, that tells us that domestic violence is alive and well out there,” she said.
According to the Blood Tribe Police Service, the numbers are likely much worse than they appear.
Const. Austin Arcand-Giant said many cases in the community go unreported.
“Out here in the Blood Tribe, our police force has dealt with 7,000 calls for service this year and out of those, we have had 79 reported domestic violence calls,” said Arcand-Giant. “A lot of domestic violence, especially out here, goes untold.”
Satinder Palsingh, a firefighter and advanced care paramedic with Blood Tribe Emergency Services, took part in Friday’s walk. He said events like this help shine a light on these issues.
“Working out on the reserve here, I’ve worked here for about three years now and I’ve been to quite a few domestic violence calls, and so (the walk is) to bring more awareness to it,” said Palsingh.
Lowhorn said there are many resources in the community for people to access and encourages people to reach out for help if they need it.
© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.