Girls in Canada subject to dating violence, self-harm, low self-esteem, racial discrimination

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A new report by the Girls Action Foundation, Beyond Appearances: Brief on the Main Issues Facing Girls in Canada, uncovers the real story of girls’ lives in Canada. The never before compiled information reveals that girls still face many hurdles despite gains in education and legal equality.Violence persists in many forms, including widespread experiences of sexual harassment, dating violence, and racism.

Teen girls’ mental health should be a national concern. Self-harm, depressive symptoms, low self-esteem and attempted suicide are far higher than for teen boys.

Girls are not all on an equal playing field – those belonging to Indigenous, immigrant, rural and racialized communities face specific barriers and challenges.

Solutions exist – including policies that take girls into account, and programs that provide girls with safe spaces to build confidence, find mentors and take action on what matters to them. By starting early to support girls in fulfilling their potential and alleviating challenges, Canada will be closer to reducing the gender gap. Girls Action Foundation is a leader in girls’ empowerment programs and steward of a network of some 300 independent girl-serving organizations across Canada.

Find more information and the full report on their website.