by Stephanie Barr
Earlier this week, staff from our SafeChoice Domestic Violence Program attended the 2014 Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence (WSCADV) Conference at the Vancouver Hilton. Connie Burk, Executive Director of the Northwest Network, gave a keynote address titled, “Nothing’s Neutral: On Gender Violence and Why Sexism Still Matters.” Connie addressed the increasing awareness and support of LGBTQ victims of domestic violence, and posed the question “does serving survivors of all genders required a gender neutral analysis of domestic violence?” I felt inspired by her firm stance that instead of a gender neutral approach, this shift requires a more robust analysis of gender that effectively supports all survivors. We know that gender identity and sexual orientation are significant factors in determining a person’s risk of domestic violence. Connie argued, eloquently and with humor, that sexism matters more now than ever before.