#SafeHealthyFree: TJ = Survivor Safety, Healing & Agency
All of the work of the Young Women’s Freedom Center moves individuals, communities and conditions towards these goals by establishing basic safety, providing individual and collective healing, practicing accountability and experiencing redemption, and systemic transformation towards decarceration and decriminalization.
Transformative Justice is what we are building as the alternative – in practice, through programs, through legislative work and building liberated spaces within communities that offer a glimpse of what’s possible. Through Freedom 2030 we are building power to scale!
Over the next four weeks we will share the work and practices of YWFC that supports each of these goals.
Survivor safety, healing, and agency
We support our folks in situations of domestic violence or interpersonal violence and sexual exploitation in identifying their support system and creating an escape plan when needed or once a survivor is willing.
We know that in relationships with partners, parents, housemates or those who exploit, control of resources and withholding meaningful items is a way to exercise power over someone. YWFC holds onto copies of important documents like IDs, birth certificates and social security cards for participants. This way, if they need to start over or qualify for an emergency service, they have the proper paperwork to do so. We also allow for individuals to receive mail for housing, checks, legal paperwork and other mail they want kept private.
Healing is an integral component of personal liberation. Healing is also collective. We heal in community and one person’s healing inspires another. When we heal, we are more equipped to create and participate in fighting for the collective liberation we seek.
Healing is not a one size fits all approach. We work with participants and members to find the right form of healing for them and will make referrals or even invest financially in the form of healing they would like to engage in.
Amnesty – Temporary Forgiveness
One way we ask for participants and members to be in space is to have amnesty or temporary forgiveness for others who are in the space that they may have history with. YWFC serves young people from MANY different neighborhoods and communities. There are times when people in these neighborhoods are in conflict with each other or when youth are in conflict with each other, but when they are at YWFC, we ask them to have “amnesty” for each other. Amnesty or temporary forgiveness allows for all participants to participate in actions, events and programming at YWFC and know they are safe and focused on their healing and getting what they need from their participation at YWFC.
Transformative justice is not a program or a method, it’s a commitment to principles, practices and processes that can be used to transform our own histories of surviving and doing harm, heal our relationships and change conditions towards liberation.
We hope that you will join us in expanding the circles of people committed to bringing transformative justice to our lives, families, communities and our movements.
Young Women’s Freedom Center leadership