Winnipeg mother charged with stabbing two children
A Winnipeg woman has been charged with three counts of attempted murder after her two young sons — a nine-year-old and a four-month-old — and her sister were stabbed.
The children were taken to hospital in critical condition Thursday with wounds to their upper bodies but have since been upgraded to stable, police said.
The 32-year-old sister of the woman was also stabbed as she tried to intervene, but was treated in hospital and released. The sister's four-month-old daughter was not injured, said Const. Jason Michalyshen.
The nine-year-old boy fled the suite in a downtown housing complex after being injured and notified security at the apartment, who then contacted emergency services, police said.
The 35-year-old mother was arrested shortly after the incident, which happened around 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the housing complex at 355 Kennedy St.
Police had to use a translator to interview the mother, who is originally from Africa, Michalyshen said. Neighbours told CBC News the family had moved to Winnipeg from Somalia four years ago.
The Winnipeg Free Press quotes unnamed sources as saying the mother had recently been suffering from postpartum depression.
The woman has also been charged with assault with a weapon and assault. She is in custody at the Provincial Remand Centre.
The children have been placed in the care of the provincial government's Child and Family Services agency.
Immigrants face challengesPeople who work with newcomers say there can be stressful challenges for people who come to Canada.
There can be a sense of isolation for people because of language and cultural differences, said Noelle De Pape, executive director of the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization of Manitoba, which offers transitional housing and social services to new Canadians.
While there are many support programs available, people need to be made aware of them and take advantage, she said.
People who have gone through refugee camps may not know how to access help, she added.
"We end up dealing with many issues that are at a crisis point with very expensive front-line services like police and hospital, but we need to focus on prevention and supporting families and their children," De Pape said.
She also noted the location of Thursday's stabbing "is right in the heart of … the newcomer service community, near Central Park."
This woman should be granted bail. She is suffering from depression and is a new immigrant, and prison will likely worsen her condition. I do not believe she is a danger to the public as she has no prior criminal record.