Originally posted on PreventConnect by Tori Vandelinde
The National Sexual Violence Resource Center and the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence partnered for a new resource, Back to Basics: Partnering with Survivors and Communities to Promote Health Equity at the Intersections of Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence. This innovative new document centers health equity and prevention solutions around the needs of Black women survivors, because, as the Combahee River Collective quote states, “If Black women were free, it would mean that everyone else would have to be free since our freedom would necessitate the destruction of all systems of oppression.”
Back to Basics: Partnering with Survivors and Communities to Promote Health Equity at the Intersections of Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence is broken up into thematic sections: Health Equity is Our Work, Sexual & Intimate Partner Violence are Interconnected, COVID & Health Equity, Stories of Survivors at the Intersections, Building Capacity for Health Equity Work, Partnering for Health Equity, Moving Forward: A Call to Action, and Actualizing Your Commitment to Health Equity. Not only does this document provide explanations and examples of health equity’s intersection with sexual and intimate partner violence prevention, it also provides necessary framing and information to move from statements of support to continual actions to center, support, listen to, trust, and prioritize Black women at the margins. Sexual and intimate partner violence prevention practitioners have expanded their knowledge around the intersections between racial justice, gender justice, and violence prevention, but this document provides key guidance to transform knowledge into sustained action to transform cultures so that they center health equity and anti-oppression.
In addition to this free and necessary resource, NRCDV also published an accompanying TA Question of the Month to help audiences embody actions necessary to prevent violence: “How can domestic and sexual violence advocates center health equity for Black women in our work?” These two resources are crucial elements to building a foundation of anti-oppression that preventionists must use in order to advance the primary prevention of sexual and intimate partner violence. All forms of oppression are root causes of violence and must be addressed in prevention programs. Without a foundation of anti-oppression and health equity in violence prevention, one can ask, “Who is this program or strategy really preventing violence for?” Preventionists hold tight to the goal of healthy, thriving communities for all, and to get there, it’s necessary for preventionists to take the guidance in Back to Basics: Partnering with Survivors and Communities to Promote Health Equity at the Intersections of Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence to heart and move from knowledge to action to create environments that center health equity for Black women.