Purple Ribbon Campaign

SUPPORT SURVIVORS. Support the person ~ Involve the community ~ Right the World.

The ACSW purple ribbon theme focuses on supporting survivors of sexual violence to thrive. Being open, listening and speaking without judgment, and knowing how best to respond can have a huge positive impact on survivors and their ability to move forward. We have a responsibility to act with compassion and knowledge as individuals, and as a community, to make the world right. Gender-based violence can be stopped.

Annually, volunteers cut and pin more than 17,000 purple ribbons to bookmarks, for distribution across the Island. The purple ribbons are worn to honour the many lives lost to gender-based violence and to signify a commitment to ending violence in all our communities.

The Purple Ribbon Campaign Against Violence (Campagne du ruban violet contre la violence) was initiated by the PEI Advisory Council on the Status of Women in 1991 to raise awareness about violence against women, to remember the 14 women who were murdered at L’École Polytechnique in Montreal on December 6, 1989, to remember the 10 Island women murdered by someone who knew them since 1989, and to call for justice for missing and murdered Indigenous women across Canada. December 6, 2019 marks 30 years since the Montreal Massacre. We are called to mourn and act to end gender-based violence that continues.

Commentary, Debbie Langston, ChairpersonSupporting Survivors for an End to Violence Against Women / Appuyer les survivantes pour mettre fin à la violence contre les femmes

2019-2020 Bookmark

Download PDF of 2019-2020 purple ribbon card


  • Support Survivors (resource poster) … ENG&FRE – PDF
  • Purple Ribbon Backgrounder … ENG-PDF    FRE-PDF
  • 30 Years After the Montreal Massacre (interview excerpts poster) … ENG&FRE – PDF
  • Remembering Murdered Women / Commémoration des femmes assassinées … ENG&FRE – PDF

30 Years After the Montreal Massacre – Interviews

To create a resource for Purple Ribbon Teachers’ Guides, Advisory Council staff interviewed three women with different perspectives on the Montreal Massacre, thirty years since it happened. We interviewed an engineer of the same generation as the women who were murdered at l’Ecole Polytechnique, a woman who immigrated to Canada in the wake of the massacre, and a Mi’kmaw woman who wasn’t born in 1989 when the tragedy occurred.

Excerpts are available as a poster in English and French here … PDF
You can read fuller versions of the interviews in English at the links below:

Multilingual Poster

This year’s multilingual 11”x17” poster highlights the Purple Ribbon Campaign theme “SUPPORT SURVIVORS. Support the person ~ Involve the community ~ Right the World.” in English, French, Mi’kmaq, Arabic, Farsi, Mandarin Chinese, Nepali, Vietnamese, Hindi and Spanish. These represent the founding and most commonly spoken languages of our province. Posters are available by request.  Download printable multilingual poster: 2019 Purple Ribbon Campaign multilingual poster (PDF).


Thank You…

A sincere thank you to the 2019 contributors to the Purple Ribbon Campaign and the December 6 Memorial Service for generous assistance. 

  • Federated Women’s Institutes of PEI
  • Aboriginal Women’s Association
  • Confederation Centre of the Arts – Venue Sponsor
  • Premier’s Action Committee on Family Violence Prevention (PAC)
  • City of Charlottetown
  • Translators: Service de traduction du gouvernement de l’Î.-P.-É. (French); Thirly Levi (Mi’kmaq); Krishna Thakur (Nepali and Hindi); Alex Yin (Mandarin Chinese); Antony Baker (Spanish); Caitlyn Huynh (Vietnamese); Fereshteh Shaer (Arabic and Farsi)
  • Paxton Caseley and Danya O’Malley of Anderson House, Family Violence Prevention Services
  • Francis Handrahan for extraordinary assistance with ribbon cutting
  • Confederation Centre Public Library and members of the public who attended the Pinning Bee
  • Reach Foundation participants
  • Holland College Child and Youth Care program students
  • Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)
  • Dawn Wilson, Guest Speaker
  • Vocalists Kate Dempsey, Allison Kelly, and Marlee Saulnier
  • Todd MacLean for piano accompaniment
  • Elder Julie Pellissier-Lush and Brittany Pellissier for offering Mi’kmaw opening and closing prayer
  • Pam MacKinnon and Eileen LeClair for the UPSE Silent Witnesses silhouettes
  • Michelle Buttery for providing emotional care during the service
  • Interministerial Women’s Secretariat for the bouquet of roses
  • Advisory Council members
  • Volunteers Kate Liu, Dan Lee, Melissa Bruce, Jennifer Jay, Bella Jay and Debbie MacInnis
  • Rob Warren and Paul Wood, Confederation Centre of the Arts
  • and all of the candle-lighters – family members and friends of murdered PEI women, representatives of organizations working to prevent violence against women, and community leaders/dignitaries


Pinning Bee volunteers keeping busy at the Pinning Bee at the Confederation Centre Public Library.