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An exhibit of anti-domestic violence posters put together by an Irish police officer opened in Winnipeg this week.

Little did I realize back in early 2001 when I started this project that it would turn into something as big as this,” Colm Dempsey, organizer of the Violence Against Women Poster Exhibition, has said.

But Dempsey, a police officer and native of Galway, Ireland, has watched his exhibition grow and tour internationally, with contributors from 58 countries around the world. The exhibition includes photos, posters and other media that have sought to raise awareness about domestic violence.

Paul Moist, Honourable Gord Mackintosh, Manitoba’s Minister of Family Services and Housing, and Honourable Nancy Allan, Minister Responsible for the Status of Women gave speeches at the event.

Canada can be a leader in ending violence against women,” said Moist. “We can start by offering support for affordable housing, fair wages for women, support and protection in law for women reporting sexual assault, better protection at work, and strong support programs for women in crisis.”

Domestic violence and its terrible impact on individuals, families and society needs to be kept front and centre as a public issue. Only when there is broad awareness and we all do our part will the violence stop,” added Sheree Capar, Social Services and Child Care Coordinator for CUPE.

The exhibit is sponsored by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), the Manitoba Association of Women’s Shelters, the Government of Manitoba – Family Violence Prevention Program and the Moffat Family Foundation.