Community accountability is a process in which a community a group of friends a

Community accountability is a process in which a

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to address violence within our communities. Community accountability is a process in which a community – a group of friends, a family, a church, a workplace, an apartment complex, a neighborhood, etc – work together to do the following things: -Create and affirm VALUES & PRACTICES that resist abuse and oppression and encourage safety, support, and accountability -Develop sustainable strategies to ADDRESS COMMUNITY MEMBERS’ ABUSIVE BEHAVIOR, creating a process for them to account for their actions and transform their behavior -Commit to ongoing development of all members of the community, and the community itself, to TRANSFORM THE POLITICAL CONDITIONS that reinforce oppression and violence -Provide SAFETY & SUPPORT to community members who are violently targeted that RESPECTS THEIR SELF-DETERMINATION 36 Despite the noble efforts of activists to constantly improve upon their methodology and praxis, no process is without defects, and the work is highly situational, and utterly dependent upon cooperation by all parties, and this cooperation is not always easy to obtain on more than a superficial level. In order for the restorative process to work, the perpetrator must be willing to engage in an honest dialogue, accept accountability, and be willing to re-examine their behavior. In an interview that I conducted with Augustine 37 regarding hir work as a part of an ad-hoc group formed around a series of abuses between two partners in hir community of “boston/northeast anarchists”, zie expressed significant doubts about the effectiveness of the process used by hir group. The process that Augustine described to me was at first a bunch of us just gathered at someone's house to talk to g and figure out what he needed and remind him that yes, all that 38 was really fucked up and we're not cool with it 36 From the INCITE! Webpage, <; To read INCITE!’s actual community accountability strategies (praxis), see appendix. 37 Name has been changed to protect the privacy of my interviewee upon hir request. Zie additionally requested that I use gender-neutral pronouns when referring to her after our interview, as zie identifies as gender queer. Hopefully the shift in pronouns isn’t too confusing. The interview was conducted over e-mail on December 13, 2007. To read the transcript, please see the appendix. 38 By “all that,” Augustine means “my partner (g) at the time and i were in an open relationship and he was dating this asshole (d), also an 'activist', who repeatedly sexually and emotionally abused him, to the point that he could barely function. Their relationship was rife with power imbalances and generally fucked up shit, especially in regards to sexism and transphobia. at one point the 3 of us and most of our friends were attending a now-defunct queer group, and d's presence there really disturbed g. eventually g talked to some other people about what happened, and we banded together to talk to d about how we felt about his actions and attempt to reach some compromise based on what g needed and for our general dislike of sexual assault happening in our community.”
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social context of inequality.”
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  • Spring '14
  • MichaelJ.Dorer
  • assault, Violence against women

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