femifesto is a Toronto-based, grassroots feminist collective that works to end rape culture.We envision transformative communities that cultivate a culture of support, consent and accountability. We recognize the importance of media in shaping conversations and want to support those who work in it as they navigate covering sexual assault. We created Reporting on Sexual Assault: A Toolkit for Canadian Media to provide members of the press with the resources and knowledge they need to contribute to a public discourse on rape and sexual assault that is supportive of survivors.

Entries by femifesto

Debunking Myths About Rape In Prison

(0) Comments | Posted November 15, 2016 | 12:00 PM

Prison rape: it's a common trope in television and movies. How often is the "don't drop the soap," joke casually tossed around?

But what's the reality for sexual violence survivors in prisons? We spoke with El Jones and Mooky Cherian to learn more.


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Centring Youth Voices In Media Coverage Of Sexual Violence

(0) Comments | Posted November 1, 2016 | 12:02 PM

Children and youth under the age of 18 are the most at risk for sexual assault in Canada, followed by young people aged 18-24, according to Statistics Canada.

This issue is critically important to young people, but so often, older adult voices are prioritized. We...

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Queer Women Creating Consent Culture

(0) Comments | Posted October 26, 2016 | 3:14 PM

The rate of violent victimization is 2.5 times higher for Canadians who identify as gay or lesbian, as opposed to those who identify as straight. For those who identify as bisexual, it's four times higher, according to Statistics Canada.

While there's been increased media attention...

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Talking About Cis Men And Media Coverage Of Sexual Assault

(1) Comments | Posted October 18, 2016 | 3:23 PM

Too often, men who are sexually assaulted have their stories erased - or mocked. When, in 2013, a young man was sexually assaulted in Toronto's entertainment district, his story became fodder for jokes.

While cisgender men are much less likely to experience sexual violence than women and trans...

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End Islamophobic Coverage Of Muslim Sexual Violence Survivors

(0) Comments | Posted October 5, 2016 | 11:31 AM

Police-reported hate crimes against Muslims have more than doubled over the past three years in Canada.

Quite often, visibly Muslim women receive the worst of Islamophobic violence and harassment. And when they face violence from within their communities, Muslim women may be unlikely to report it, knowing...

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Let's Create Consent Culture Online

(0) Comments | Posted September 13, 2016 | 11:26 AM

While "cyberviolence" has been a hot topic for the past few years, recent months have put a spotlight on the misogynistic and racist sexual violence and harassment enacted online. More than two-thirds of Canadians who report cyber crimes to the police are women, according to Statistics Canada.


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Listen To Sexual Assault Survivors Of Colour

(0) Comments | Posted September 2, 2016 | 12:01 PM

More and more, we're hearing stories of sexual violence being told publicly and receiving sustained media attention. We see mainstream media using the phrase "rape culture" -- used for decades by anti-sexual violence advocates -- to talk about the system of beliefs and attitudes that props up abusers while tearing...

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Stop Erasing Sexual Violence Survivors With Disabilities

(0) Comments | Posted August 25, 2016 | 3:32 PM

When it comes to sexual violence, people with disabilities are often the most vulnerable. Research shows that women with disabilities are three times as likely to be forced into sexual activity (Vecova).

But where are the stories of sexual violence survivors with disabilities?

femifesto spoke with two gender-based...

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Let's Dispel The Myths Around Sex Workers And Assault

(3) Comments | Posted August 19, 2016 | 12:45 PM

We've seen the headlines before:

"Toronto man posing as undercover cop to demand sexual favours from prostitutes, police say" (National Post)

"Manchester United's David De Gea accused of organising prostitute sex 'party' for Spanish U-21 teammates" (Manchester Evening News)

When we see stories of sexual...

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Consent Culture Isn't Possible In A Colonial System

(1) Comments | Posted August 11, 2016 | 12:22 PM

Representation matters.

Advocates say there are more than 1200 missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada, but these stories seldom garner national press. And Indigenous women in the provinces report a rate of violent victimization that is about 2.5 times higher than the rate for non-Indigenous women (Statistics Canada)....

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Who Will Protect Us From Our Protectors?

(1) Comments | Posted August 5, 2016 | 12:01 PM

The past month has justice for Black communities into the spotlight. First there was Black Lives Matter's high-profile protest against police presence at the Toronto Pride Parade, and the ensuing racist backlash. Then, the tragic murders of Black community members including Alton Sterling, Philando...

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Stop Excluding Trans Survivors From Discussions Of Sexual Violence

(1) Comments | Posted June 30, 2016 | 1:12 PM

"I'm actually glad to see the term 'rape culture' starting to pervade public consciousness through the media," says Kai Cheng Thom. "That term has specifically been used in mainstream media and that's amazing."

For Kai -- a writer, performance artist, and social worker -- the fact that we're talking about...

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Top 9 Ways to Not Get Raped

(10) Comments | Posted July 22, 2014 | 12:49 PM

At 18 years old, exhausted by all the things I was being told I should have done to protect myself from being sexually assaulted by a friend, I wrote a satirical list of tips on "How to Avoid Rape." The list parodied the "tips" given to me, which always made...

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