Tag Archives: sacomss

On this blog, we talk a lot about being anti-oppressive, but we wanted to take the time to discuss what exactly that means and why it’s important to us. This is going to kick off a new series of blog posts on social justice definitions and concepts, so while this will be just a brief overview of some important ideas, we’ll be writing more in-depth posts on a lot of these topics in the months to come.

We at SACOMSS understand anti-oppression work to include work that is queer positive, trans* positive, anti-ablist, anti-classist, anti-agist, anti-racist, and anti-sexist. We also think it’s important to be non-judgemental, pro-survivor, and pro-feminist. But what does all that really mean?

In general, being anti-oppressive means acknowledging that systematic oppression exists in our society—that is, that certain people are afforded more privileges than others based on characteristics like their race, sexual orientation, or gender identity. It also means actively fighting against this oppression and for greater equity in society (that’s where something like being pro-feminist comes in). For us, this means both doing our best not to recreate these systems of oppression within our organization—by, for example, being non-hierarchical, avoiding gendered language, and making our services free—and working to change these systems—by, for example, incorporating discussions about how sexism plays into sexual assault myths in the workshops we run in high schools, and supporting Montreal organizations who do work that aligns with our mandate.

As well as being opposed to discrimination and oppression based on someone’s race, socioeconomic status, (dis)ability, age, gender identity and presentation and how that relates to their birth-assigned gender, or sexual orientation, as a sexual assault centre, we want to be pro-survivor. Essentially, that means we support any survivor of sexual assault. We will believe them, we will not judge them, and we will do our best to help them in whatever way we can.

Anti-oppression work is all about learning and unlearning—learning what different forms of oppression are and what they look like in our day-to-day lives, learning how to fight them, and also unlearning a lot of the things we were taught to say or do or believe that actually uphold these forms of oppression. We hope that you, the reader, will learn something from us, and also that you’ll keep in mind that we’re still learning what a lot of this stuff entails.

For those of you who live in the Montreal area, SACOMSS will be holding three events in the near future:    

The first is a baked-goods giveaway on Friday, November 30th.  Volunteers will be giving away sweet treats at the Y-intersection in the middle of McGill’s main campus.  More information can be found on the Facebook page.

We’re also holding a condom design competition!  We want your artwork, witty slogans, and talent to come together in a design that supports safe sex and sexual assault awareness. These are designs for the Sexual Assault Centre so your design must allow space for: our name (SACOMSS) and our number (514-398-8500).  We will be taking the top 3 designs to be voted upon as a centre. The winner will receive a prize of free condoms of your very own creation!  Deadline for submissions is December 15.

If you have any questions or want a template for your design, contact
December 6th Poster Finally, SACOMSS is hosting a memorial for the December 6th shooting at L’École Polytechnique of Montreal.
On December 6, 1989, Marc Lépine entered L’École Polytechnique of Montreal with the intention to “fight feminism” by killing women engineers. Each year, this day is remembered as the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. SACOMSS is hosting a memorial service to remember the lives that were lost and to remember that we deal with violence and oppression every day and it is our responsibility to stand up and take action.The event will be December 6, 2012 from 6:30-8:00 @ Birks Chapel (3520 University, Montreal), followed by a reception with coffee, tea and snacks. The Birks Building is wheelchair accessible.

There will be speakers and performances, as well as candle lighting and a moment of silence to remember those whose lives have been lost. Volunteers trained in active listening will be present throughout.

For more information, feel free to contact, or visit the Facebook event page.

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