It is always sad to see needed services shut down. However, it is particularly sad when those services are one of the few available to a community of people. From the article:
A privately funded shelter for male victims of domestic abuse — believed to be the only refuge of its kind in the country — has closed.
Men’s rights advocate Earl Silverman said he can’t afford to keep the Men’s Alternative Safe House (MASH) running.
Since it opened out of his house about three years ago, close to 20 men have passed through, he said. Among them was a “father with two children, a one-year-old girl and a nine-year-old boy and he was fleeing a violent, alcoholic wife.”
Absent of federal or provincial funding, Mr. Silverman said he just can’t keep up with the grocery, heat and other bills associated with running the shelter. He said he sold his home last week.
The article does not state whether Silverman applied for federal or provincial funding. It does, however, provide some insight into what might happen if Silverman made such a request:
While awareness of domestic abuse has led to hundreds of shelters and myriad resources for women, few if any can be accessed by male victims, said Don Dutton, a University of British Columbia psychology professor who has written several books and dozens of papers on domestic violence issues.
“In Canada, they’re stuck with a Marxist gender model and that’s never going to change,” he said, explaining that the current system defines “male and female relationships where men are the bourgeois group with the power and women as the proletariat with no power.”
But that’s at odds with what Statistics Canada reports, he argues.
“Every day, domestic violence is pretty much equal by gender,” Mr. Dutton said.
The article goes on to state that on self-reported surveys men report the same rate of domestic violence as women. The only difference is the severity of the violence, although that may be debatable. Women are more likely to use weapons during physical assaults and men may still have trouble admitting women hurt them.
Nevertheless, abused men certainly do need access to services since so few services in Canada assist them.
Again, the article does not state whether Silverman applied for government funding, but perhaps the media coverage may prompt the local government to make an offer to him.