At DeafHope we recognize that violence against women is created and maintained by a system of oppression and power inequities. This system of oppression is the root cause of violence against all marginalized communities. Ending violence requires individual and collective action to end oppression. Rather than relying on the criminal justice system (a system which also perpetuates violence) we want to develop community based strategies to end violence. Accountability for perpetrators of violence in the Deaf community is a work in progress. We don’t have all the answers, but are committed to ongoing communication and self-reflection to grow a process that is successful. Some guidelines for community accountability (adapted from INCITE!) include:
- Create and affirm values & practices that resist abuse and oppression and encourage safety, support, and accountability.
- Develop sustainable strategies to address abusive behavior, creating a process for perpetrators to account for their actions and transform their behavior.
- Provide safety and support to community members who experience violence that respects their right to self-determination.
We each have a responsibility to take action toward ending oppression. Violence isn’t something that happens in a vacuum, all forms of oppression are connected. DeafHope is committed to providing regular open opportunities to discuss community accountability and identify ways we can each take action to create safety. Learn more about how you can be an ally to end violence in our community. Contact an advocate at DeafHope for more information.
Article on the Deaf Community Accountability Model by Aimee Whyte and Erin Esposito
Be an Ally for Survivors – How to provide support