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Survivors need support now: A statement from one rape crisis centre

Photo: flickr/Karen Elliot

Editor’s note: As the number of women coming forward with allegations against Jian Ghomeshi rises and media coverage continues, it is important to remember that media coverage of the allegations is both important and may cause distress to survivors of sexual assault.

Many articles have been written wondering why people who are assaulted would not come forward to the police in the hope of being helped or stopping a perpetrator. In response, people have been tweeting their experience using the hashtag #beenrapedneverreported.

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| October 31, 2014
| October 30, 2014
| October 29, 2014

Talking about the Jian Ghomeshi allegations? Six ways to discuss sexual assault with survivors in mind

Photo: flickr/Devon Buchanan

Can we all please be so cautious how we talk about Jian and what's going down with the CBC right now? As a survivor of sexual assault and an advocate for people who have been assaulted, I'm already shaking at how I feel this, and the discourse around it, is going to play out. 

With statistics like one in five women being sexually assaulted over their lifetime, the chances are that we have survivors -- or people who may be victimized in the future -- watching how we talk about victims of sexual assault. 

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| October 27, 2014

Why doesn't the justice system help abused women?

Photo: flickr/meesh

A woman is being abused by her partner. She calls 911 for help. The police arrive and... arrest the woman for defending herself.

Some are under the impression that when a woman is being abused by her male partner, all she has to do is call 911 and the police will arrive like knights in shining armour. The abusive man will be charged with assault and convicted. The rescued woman will be safe from harm.

However, this is not always the reality.

For many women in Canada who experience domestic abuse and decide to call the police, they often find when the police arrive, they are also arrested because of mandatory charge policies.

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| October 21, 2014

Bill C-36: No safety or security for sex workers

Photo: flickr/A Yee

The Protection of Communities and Exploited persons act, Bill C-36, passed in the House of Commons last week. The vote was 156-124. The bill follows a Supreme Court decision in December, which ruled that several provisions in Canada's prostitution laws were unconstitutional.

Bill C-36 is based on a belief that sex workers are universally victimized, yet many of its provisions will contribute to sex workers' rights violations.

The idea that sex work is inherently exploitative is being used to justify criminal laws that deny or ignore sex workers' right to security of person.

Criminalizing clients just doesn't work

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