Sisters Uncut

Taking direct action for domestic violence services.

Safer Spaces Policy

Sisters Uncut aims to create a respectful, understanding and kind space where people feel able to express themselves and ask questions without fear of reprisal or humiliation.

This document is a guideline, it should change as we learn and grow. It should tell you what you can expect from Sisters Uncut and what you commit to as part of the Sisters community.

We have high expectations of how we behave towards each other in our meetings, actions and social spaces. We will not wait for issues of harm to happen but will proactively challenge oppression & hierarchy in everything we do.

Our meetings should be inclusive and supportive spaces for all women (trans, intersex and cis) and all nonbinary, agender and gender variant people. Self-definition is at the sole discretion of that individual. We do not police gender in our spaces. If you are here it is because you feel that you are included by our gender inclusion policy, and therefore you are welcome. Our meetings and spaces are not open to people who identify solely or primarily as men. If you have any queries regarding our gender inclusion policy, please don’t hesitate to ask questions.

Sisters Uncut is a diverse group, and some of us experience different kinds of oppression & violence at the same time, including racism, disableism, poverty, transphobia, transmisogyny, homophobia, islamophobia and antisemitism, as well as others. These oppressions are not separate from each other which can be exhausting & painful. We want to create a community that recognises and challenges the oppression & exploitation that some of us are harmed by and some of us benefit from.

Some people are survivors of domestic, sexual and state violence. Our organising & our community aims to be survivor-centred. We all respond to harmful experiences differently, so take care of yourself in meetings and actions however feels comfortable for you.

1. Consent; before you touch anyone or discuss sensitive topics ask if they are comfortable with that. Don’t assume your physical & emotional boundaries are the same as other people’s.

2. Be aware of your privileges; including less obvious or invisible hierarchies. Think about how your words, opinions and feelings are influenced and who they might exclude or harm.

3. Calling out; if you have acted or spoken harmfully, even if unintentionally, someone will bring this up with you. If this happens, listen and reflect on what they are saying even if you think they may be wrong. Don’t try to absolve yourself of responsibility.

4. Learning; if you don’t understand something, just ask. You may be directed to a book, website or skillshare to learn more. We are each responsible for our own learning and if we feel able, for sharing it with others.

5. Labour; please contribute whatever you can; this will be different for everyone and that’s fine. It’s ok to make mistakes. Please show appreciation for the hard work of others and be considerate when you offer criticism.

6. Social; Like other communities we build social relationships outside of meetings and actions. We commit to this Safer Spaces policy wherever we are together, this includes ensuring that ALL spaces are accessible to disabled people and we create opportunities to socialise without alcohol. You are not expected to participate in social events, this shouldn’t make you feel less included.

7. Security; please don’t use the names/details of people who have been involved in organising and carrying out our actions. This makes sure that journalists, Police or other unknown people don’t hold information that could put sisters at risk of harm.

8. Community Accountability; When a sister(s) is harmed, we use the principles of transformative justice to hold ourselves to account and find ways to heal, learn and move forward together. You can speak to any other sister if you would like information or support to work through an issue you have experienced or observed. Our Accountability Toolbox is a useful starting point to learn about transformative justice and accountability in Sisters Uncut.

When we work together in this radical and transformative way, we are creating the change we wish to see in the world.