Women Against Poverty Collective (WAPC)
began forming about a year ago. This group aims to bridge anti-poverty and antiviolence
organizing in Toronto so that both better represent poor womens experiences.
Gender impacts how women experience poverty. Poverty brings violence into our
lives and holds us back from freeing ourselves from it.
anti-poverty spaces it is rare for organizers to speak about their first-hand
experiences of violence and it is even rarer for these experiences to be at the
forefront of our strategies for challenge.
We Are Doing:
TAKEOVER: We are planning to come together to create our own housing
in early June. Housing that is
controlled by us so that it is safe and accessible.
This means taking an abandoned building and turning it into safe and affordable
community spaces where women can live.
CITY: We will organize a tent city that will surround the building
to create a safe barrier, and to keep us visible. Solidarity actions are encouraged
throughout the city as necessary to generate public awareness about the issues
of women and poverty.
We Are Doing This:
government, institutions and the rich have done nearly nothing to help poor and
working-class women access safe, affordable housing, we have continued to survive
cycles of homelessness reinforced by abusive men who use violence to control us.
Our lobbying and pleas to the powers that be haven't won us the things we need.
We have asked for safe and affordable housing and have gotten virtually nothing.
only way we see that we can achieve our goals is to take the housing ourselves.
We are ready to come together to exert our rights to housing that is free of violence.
We want to challenge directly the forces that keep us poor and we want to
action and grassroots activism around issues of violence and poverty. We aim to
find ways of engaging women, trans women and their children in direct action and
protest to challenge the violence and poverty in our lives. As one WAPC organizer
think it's time for women to take action
to do something
more unladylike. We need to take up space!"
May 19 2007-
Gathering for Women & trans folk only
17 Phoebe St. (north of Queen St., east
of Spadina Ave.)
TTC, Childcare, Food provided
June 3 2007-
Day of the
at Cawthra Square Park (north of 519 Church St.)
WAPC for more information at:
416-417-8962 or 416-531-2411,
is a women, trans and children led action men are
welcome to be our allies at the rally and the march.
have learned through history that sometimes we don't get anything unless we struggle
and demand to get it. I hope that, by mobilizing the community of women we'll
be able to take over, defend and keep affordable housing."
About Violence Against Women:
of all Canadian women have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual
violence since the age of 16
of women are victims of assault by a partner.
women and girls from marginalized communities are more vulnerable to violence.
rate of sexual abuse for girls living with disabilities is four times that of
the national average.
About Poverty and Women:
out of 7 Canadian women are living in poverty these women are most likely
to be women of colour, immigrant and
refugee women/women without status, Aboriginal
women, young moms, senior women, women with disabilities, and trans people
limits women's independence and makes it difficult for them to leave an abusive
partner, upon whom they may be economically dependent.
of women in shelters go back to abusive situations because Welfare rates do not
allow them to survive.
to be Involved:
us, come out to meetings, and spread the word!
Women can support this
initiative in many different ways. We need women and allies to actively participate
in the rally and march, to provide support with childcare, research, legal support,
media, food coordination, preparation, repairs, etc.
All kinds of skills
the Federal government institutes and adopt Right to Housing legislation.
the different levels of government develop a coherent, well-funded Canadawide
housing policy that has timelines, clear number of units to be built, and accountability
components included in it.
the building(s) that have been taken over in this action be turned immediately
to safe, habitable, affordable spaces controlled by the women living in them.
Social Assistance rates be increased by 40% immediately and be indexed thereafter
to inflation rates.
the criteria for inclusion on the highest priority housing list for affordable
housing be amended to include all homeless women and those women who have been
abused by their partners but who do not live with them.
women should have access to universal safe, and affordable childcare.
violence against women should be understood as an equality rights issue.
Against Poverty Collective Blog
Against Poverty Take Over Abandoned Building
Photos and listen to Audio from the Women
Against Poverty Collective: Housing Takeover Day Rally
Article: Police end anti-poverty group's house squat
Jun. 3 2007 http://tinyurl.com/3cbkd7
Police Clash With Protesters At Affordable Housing Rally
Sun. June 3, 2007