Addressing Intersections of Intimate Partner Violence, Sexual Violence and HIV/AIDS

By Choya Adkison-Stevens, OCADSV Equity & Inclusion Coordinator

Note: this piece is the first in a series supporting advocates to work with survivors around sex, sexuality and sexual health. Future columns may discuss such topics as sexual trauma, sex work, reproductive coercion, kink, non-monogamy, and others. If you have question, ideas, or experiences you want to share, please contact Choya Adkison-Stevens; thank you!

“At double the national rate, 55% of HIV-positive women have been found to experience DV.”

Yoga & Vicarious Trauma

By Trisha Elizarde-Miller, OCADSV Executive Administrative Assistant
Trisha Fey Yoga, 200-hr RYT

Service providers can often undergo vicarious trauma, which may happen after hearing survivors talk about their traumatic experiences. Even though the service provider may not be involved directly in the survivor’s trauma, they may feel the same effects of the trauma that is being described to them.

Developing Critical Partnerships: Child Support & Domestic Violence in Oregon

By Meagan Schorr, OCADSV Sexual and Domestic Violence Program Coordinator

This summer and fall we have been busy building an exciting new partnership with the Oregon Child Support Program. This partnership has allowed for the opportunity to train Child Support staff on domestic violence and inform policy changes that better support customers of the Child Support program that may also be impacted by DV.

Beginning in the spring of 2017, the Oregon Child Support Program (CSP) and OCADSV began tailoring a training originally developed in Texas that focuses on the intersections of child support and DV.  Vera Poe, Policy Development Manager for the Division of Child Support, explains the project below:

The Gift of Peace

Starting on November 23rd, buy paper doves at any Jacksons Food Stores location to support the Oregon Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence.

Proceeds from the Give the Gift of Peace Campaign benefit our public policy and legislative efforts to increase and improve services for domestic violence survivors. Check out our infographic to learn how your donations are put to good use!

  Find a Jacksons near you   Download email signature image   Download infographic

Advancing Gender-Inclusive Services

Do you sometimes feel confused or overwhelmed by trying to keep up with evolving language and experiences regarding gender and sexuality? This article aims to provide some easy to understand information that will help ground our conversations about (and work to improve) gender-inclusive services.

Note: there is a helpful terms list here; use it when you run into a word you don’t understand!

In this article I will discuss three concepts -- gender essentialism, the gender binary, heteronormativity -- and the ways they limit our ability to provide gender-inclusive services. I will briefly reference relevant law and policy that affirm we must provide services to survivors of all genders. And I will present some practical suggestions for improving accessibility for people of all genders, particularly those who are not cisgender women. Keep an eye out for a webinar expanding on some of this material.

The foundation of our advocacy work is promoting self-determination and safety for survivors. We generally understand the need for our services stems from the use of patriarchal and misogynistic violence, and other forms of oppression (ableism, racism, homophobia, etc) exacerbate the harm caused. We are committed to upholding the dignity of each and every survivor, regardless of gender, race, language, income, disability, etc; these are the anti-oppressive values from which we strive to do our work.

However, sometimes our advocacy work is impeded by the lingering, often unstated, even unconscious, belief in what is called gender essentialism: the view that women and men are fundamentally and permanently different on a biological level. One of the places this shows up is the mistaken belief that transgender women are actually men, and should not be allowed in spaces historically or currently intended for women. This is incredibly harmful to inclusion, healing and uplifting for trans women, many of whom experience incredibly high rates of violence. As United States Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta reminded us last summer in a powerful address, “transgender women are women; they live, work and study as women.”

Announcing El Programa Hispano Católico, the coalition's first Prevention Through Liberation grantee

  Press release

The Oregon Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence, in collaboration with the Oregon Health Authority, is pleased to announce that El Programa Hispano Católico – Project UNICA has been selected as the first-ever recipient of Prevention Through Liberation grant funding, effective October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018!

Prevention Through Liberation-funded programs will receive support in developing well-informed theoretical frameworks, implementing promising prevention practices, and adopting robust evaluation methods. These capacity-building activities and resources will support grantees as they continue to grow their prevention efforts into the future. The coalition will make many of these resources available to all coalition member programs, as part of our efforts to increase sexual violence prevention capacity throughout Oregon.

Moving forward from Charlottesville

The Oregon Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence is deeply saddened by the recent acts of violence perpetrated by white supremacists and their supporters in Charlottesville, Virginia. As an organization dedicated to ending violence and promoting social equity, we mourn the lives lost and injuries sustained while redoubling our efforts to support all survivors of sexual and domestic violence, including those from marginalized communities.

“Ally” is a verb; recognizing and interrupting oppression must be an ongoing process for all of us. We must call racism and bigotry by their names wherever we see them. We must hold accountable those people who are perpetrating these hateful acts of terror and violence. We invite you to lean in with us, especially when it is uncomfortable, as we work to build a more just, inclusive society.

Vanessa Timmons, 2017 recipient of the Diane Reese Excellence in Advocacy in the Movement—D.R.E.A.M.—Award

The coalition board of directors and staff are extremely proud to announce that Vanessa Timmons, our executive director, has received the 2017 Diane Reese Excellence in Advocacy in the Movement—D.R.E.A.M.—Award from the National Network to End Domestic Violence!

This award is named in honor of Diane Reese, who was a founding member of the West VA coalition, an integral champion in the passage of the Violence Against Women Act, a renowned educator, and an ardent national activist with many accomplishments. The DREAM Award honors an individual who incorporates and demonstrates the spirit and promise of true advocacy in all aspects of life—one who emulates Ms. Reese’s commitment to clear and ethical communication, (her) eagerness to collaborate in the spirit of true partnership, and (her) deep respect for the dignity, worth, and humanity in each one of us.

Congratulations, Vanessa!! 

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