Violence against women is an issue that affects all women, regardless of their race, sexual orientation, age, ability, and socio-economic status. It is a systemic problem that permeates all spaces in which we live and work. And it is a problem that all of us must confront, oppose, and organize against – especially as trade unionists.
A member of CUPE 3903 has recently advised the Executive Committee that she is a survivor of a sexual assault and that the accused has been criminally charged. We were deeply troubled to hear this news. We are aware that sexual assault is pervasive in our society and that many sexual assaults go unreported due to the barriers that survivors face in reporting such incidents.
The Executive Committee of CUPE 3903 wishes to offer its unconditional support to the member who came forward to report this incident, and to acknowledge her courage and fortitude in speaking out against sexual violence. We are taking action to support the member by committing ourselves to developing serious, long-term measures that begin to address systemic and structural problems such as sexism, misogyny, sexual violence, and rape culture.
The Executive Committee recognizes the bravery of the survivor, and wishes to send a strong message of support to all survivors of sexual violence, whether union members or members of the broader York community, and to help create the conditions that make it possible for them to come forward and find the support they need and deserve.