By Alyssa Hussein, Social Media Volunteer at WomanACT
On May 8th, 2015 31-year-old Suraiya Gangaram was found dead in their home by her 14-year-old daughter. Suraiya was stabbed and died from the wounds. Her ex-boyfriend, Lascelles Allen, has been charged with first-degree murder. Half an hour after the discovery of Sauraiya’s body, Allen threw himself in front of a train. He survived.
Suraiya and Allen had planned to meet in order for her to pass some belongings back to him. They were no longer in a relationship at the time. They dated more than two years ago, but Allen was charged with domestic assault and was ordered not to make contact with Suraiya.
In addition to her 14-year old daughter who discovered her body, Suraiya had two other children. She was a single mother who “tried everything she could to give them [her children] a happy life”, her sister has expressed. Suraiya’s children and their futures are in the hands of the system.
As we commemorate the tragic and undeserved death of Suraiya, this is a call to action in regards to situations in which domestic violence has previously been present in relationships. Data collected by OAITH has demonstrated that one of the most common victim-offender relationship related to intimate partner violence, are ex-boyfriends. In addition to Allen being Suraiya’s ex-boyfriend, he had clearly previously demonstrated violence toward her as he was charged with domestic assault. This is a call to action, for increased support of loved ones, especially when violence has come into play in their relationships. Acknowledging and working towards understanding the root of the violence, with family and friends, can provide support in times of need.
 OAITH, 1990-2015 25 Years of Femicide
Special thanks to OAITH for putting together the Annual Femicide List. Since 1995 The Ontario Association of Interval and Transitional Housing began collecting the names of women, and their children, murdered by their intimate partners, as a way to remember victims, honour their lives and advocate for meaningful change.