SACHA is a feminist, non-profit, community-based organization that provides supports to people who have experienced sexualized violence at any point in their lives. We work to end violence and oppression through education, advocacy, outreach, coalition building, community partnerships, and activism.
You are not alone. SACHA has been working for over forty years to support survivors of sexual assault while working to end violence and oppression.
SACHA’s feminism is important to us. A feminist analysis of sexual violence that recognizes the systemic and societal structures that promote or allow sexual violence to exist. Sexual assault does not happen because of sexual attraction, but is an attempt to exert power and control over someone else.
“Feminism is a movement to end sexism, sexist exploitation, and oppression." – bell hooks
We have an intersectional feminist analysis. We believe that to end sexual violence, we must end all forms of oppression.
Sexual violence is an expression of social inequality. Sexual assault takes place within a social, political, cultural and economic context of historical disadvantage and oppression. We know that those from marginalized communities such as Indigenous folks, people living with disabilities, people of colour, immigrant and refugees, LGBQT2S folks, and other marginalized groups are at an increased risk of experiencing sexual violence. Because of this, our services need to be accessible to everyone, especially the most marginalized.
A feminist analysis of sexual violence also recognizes how men are socialized can serve as barriers to male survivors reaching out and receiving support. Traditionally, being a “man” is at odds with being a “victim”. This analysis holds that male survivors also need and deserve access to specialized services to promote healing.
SACHA is committed to including all people in the work to end sexual violence.
Feminism towards Inclusivity
We are committed to addressing the many ways feminism has been exclusionary and has failed those who should be included in spaces like SACHA. One of the areas we are currently working towards is a more inclusive practice and language around gender that can be welcoming and supportive for all gender identities and expressions, including trans, non-binary, and Two-Spirit people.
Trans, Two-Spirit, and non-binary members of our communities face a higher risk of violence including sexual violence, and the upholding of a gender binary contributes to this violence. We are committed to fighting transphobia and unlearning this binary within SACHA’s practices, policies, and services and we welcome input from these communities on where we can do better.
When we use the term woman/women, we mean ALL women including cis and trans women. We recognize that this historically has wrongfully not been the way this term has been used and that many continue to exclude trans women. We at SACHA affirm that trans women are women.
Decriminalization of sex work
SACHA supports the decriminalization of sex work. Decriminalization entails the removal of all sex work related offences from the Criminal Code. This means sex workers, and their clients, would not be subject to arrest because of activities related to sex work.
Both men and women participate in sex work. Women (trans and cisgender) are more often the target of violence. For this reason, we address the concerns of women in sex work. SACHA supports the decriminalization of sex work for the safety of all sex workers.
We are thankful for the generous support of our funders:
- Ministry of the Attorney General - Ontario Victim Services Secretariat
- United Way of Halton & Hamilton
- City of Hamilton