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Blog | 17 August 2021

Standing in solidarity for a better sector

Statement on concerns of discrimination in the VAWG Sector

We owe it to each other to stand up to all forms of inequality and discrimination.

Mridul Wadhwa

We know we can create a sector that is accessible, equitable, safe, brave and kind. We can challenge sexual violence and hatred, address trauma and fight patriarchy in a way that is empowering, feminist and community-minded. And what’s more, we have a responsibility to create this change – together. ‘We owe it to each other to stand up to all forms of inequality and discrimination.’

At Survivors’ Network we are keenly aware of examples of inequality and discrimination in our own sector. There is a real strength in being able to name the issues, in speaking truth to power – and we hope we are able as an organisation to lend our voices in solidarity, taking an active position against racism, transphobia and all forms of bigotry.

We want to extend our solidarity specifically to Mridul Wadhwa and the team at Edinburgh Rape Crisis Centre who are doing extraordinary work supporting survivors while also facing transphobic abuse.

We also send our solidarity and great respect to workers in the Violence against Women & Girls (VAWG) Sector who have spoken publicly about their experiences of racist and discriminatory practice at work. We stand with the VAWG Anti-Racism Working Group in calling for reflection and change.

We all have a right to be safe in our workplaces, and when we reach out for support as survivors. No one should have to experience hatred or discrimination anywhere, but especially in spaces they have been assured are safe.

This is certainly something that we are mindful of at Survivors’ Network, for our service users and our staff. Your safety is our priority – and if we aren’t getting it right, we hope you will let us know. We are here to listen to you, and we will believe you.

This work is a journey, not a destination. We stand firmly in our efforts to create as safe a space as possible for survivors, and for the incredible women we employ. We know that part of this is being willing to have difficult conversations, and to do the complex work of creating trauma-informed environments within a society that has discrimination embedded from the start.

We hope you will join us in this journey, and in extending love, solidarity and respect to all those who are standing up to inequality and discrimination across the sector and the world. Together we can – and will! – build something better.

"We owe it to each other to stand up to all forms of inequality and discrimination" - Mridul Wadhwa. Quote overlaying a purple and turquoise pattern, with a line drawing of Edinburgh CEO Mridul Wadwha to the right.