“You have a right to be here.”

Debbie Zimmerman speaking at WINspirational Women. Photo credit: Renate Hodges.
She spoke these words a few times over the course of the evening and – most powerfully – she ended on them. “You have a right to be here.”

Debbie Zimmerman, CEO of Grape Growers of Ontario and long-time local politician was speaking to a room full of women (and a few men) at Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce‘s Women in Niagara (WIN) Council event: WINspirational Women. I had the additional pleasure of sitting beside Debbie’s mother, Pearle Roy, and chatting with her about how strong all of her daughters are. Continue reading ““You have a right to be here.””

Speak Out

This past April, just six months ago, I took to social media – as I often do – to voice my displeasure about the implications of the outcome of a certain high profile sexual assault case. In doing so, I also shared some of my personal stories about street harassment and sexual assault.

Shortly afterwards, N reached out to me asking to discuss the issue further and, when we met for coffee, she immediately asked, “What can we do about this?” Continue reading “Speak Out”