WHO

Heather Jarvis

SlutWalk Co-Founder / Organizer

Heather Jarvis is a queer feminist activist. With experience in gender studies, social work and community activism she has spent several years supporting and initiating projects around sexuality, gender, education and health, anti-violence efforts and creating safer spaces for support.

As a survivor of sexual assaults, this past year Heather was upon hearing a slut-shaming and victim-blaming comment made by a representative of the Toronto Police force when discussing safety. Having had enough, she co-founded SlutWalk in early 2011 – a small idea that began in Toronto to fight sexual violence and has since spread across the world.

Identifying with sex- and body-positive politics, Heather Jarvis constantly aims to shed shame around sex and sexuality. She has a fascination with language and identities, striving to utilize language to interrogate ideas and blend important conversations across oppression, desire and expression. Described as an eternal optimist by some who know her, Heather refuses to believe things cannot change. She is determined to continuously work on improving this world through increased respect, consent, understanding and acceptance. Through her politics and her work she has become a speaker, advocate and educator.

Natalee Brouse

SlutWalk Organizer & Media Coordinator 

Natalee Brouse has been an active supporter of the SlutWalk movement from its inception. She and her wife marched in the inaugural event in a wedding dress and tux to make a visual point about marriage being no safe haven from sexual violence.

Her long history of supporting survivors in her personal life and through her volunteer work for rape crisis centres, as well as an activist volunteer for many different community organizations and causes, has prepared her to correct a lot of misinformation and rape myths. Since 2012 she has been an official organizer, and helped keep Toronto residents informed on current issues through the SWTO Facebook page.

On her own time, Natalee keeps up to date on deconstructing difficult subjects through her blog, Damsel in de Tech. Tackling such topics as rape jokes, the media’s insensitivity towards male survivors of sexual violence, and the impracticality of many ‘anti-rape’ measures, she tries to break down issues into practical, tangible terms to make them more accessible and understandable.

The personal is political and in Natalee’s case the personal often involves kittens.

Moxie Moxon

Fierce Femme

Moxie is a social justice advocate, social service worker, labor activist, a musician, a creative business owner, queer femme/inist with lived experience of poverty, mental health recovery and sexual abuse survival. Moxie’s lived experience has led her to live a life of activism both professionally and personally. Moxie’s journey with connecting to her Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) roots and overcoming intergenerational trauma, has helped her develop a deep understanding of how reclaiming the past is crucial to living in the present and moving into the future.

Moxie deeply believes that as individuals working collectively toward change we can create a thunderstorm of beauty. Moxie’s healing process has been a life long journey. Part of this healing is to be connected with other powerful, unapologetic voices to unite in fierce resistance to victim blaming, misogyny, class oppression, hetero sexism, assimilation, genocide, racism, religious supremacy, gender phobia, fatphobia, ableist culture, and overall apathetic acceptance of victim blaming and rape culture.

Working as as a volunteer with SlutWalk, 2014 Moxie can do just this. Unite, and spread the message that enough is enough…TOGETHER, we can all ….

“be the change we seek in the world” (Mahatma Ghandi)

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Former Members of the SWTO Team:

Sonya JF Barnett

SlutWalk Co-Founder

Fed up with current media reports on the attack on women’s sexual health around Canada and the US, the incident at York University was the last straw that prompted Barnett into action. Though having little experience in demonstrations or political campaigning, she has always been vocal when coming to women’s sexual rights and freedoms. Already working with assertive people and expressing their sexuality through art, Barnett felt her experience in social media and community events could help spread the word that archaic attitudes toward sexuality need to be changed. Having stepped down from organizing at SWTO in late May, she will be concentrating further activism and advocacy against victim-blaming, slut-shaming and sexual profiling. You can follow her on twitter here.

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Jeanette Janzen

SlutWalk Researcher &  Satellite Liaison
Jeanette Janzen is currently in school for Event Planning. She’s pretty good at making things happen.

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Alyssa Teekah

SlutWalk Organizer & YorkU Liaison

Bleedin’, sweatin’, laughing and crying, Alyssa Teekah tries to talk the talk and walk the walk. Formally she is in her last year at York University (humanities and sexuality studies). She is a coordinator and co-founder of the group Feminist Action @ YU. She could choose to align with descriptors like queer, feminist, post-colonial activist – and sometimes does. But she’s also interested in the spaces in between – the yet unnamed and misunderstood which still manage to make their way into our everyday life. The unsettling, provoking ways of living and existing that often cause tensions within the institutions that profit from keeping these expressions stifled. Perhaps with rose-coloured glasses, she’s thinking of a utopian future, and trying to lay the groundwork to make it a reality.

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Erika Jane Scholz

Volunteers Coordinator

Erika is a sex-positive feminist who enjoys wearing make up, tight clothes, and socializing with guys. Does this mean that she is more likely and deserving to get sexually assaulted? Absolutely NOT, but according to the views expressed by the police at York University this past January, she is. This form of victim-blaming and slut-bashing is both false and extremely dangerous. Erika, who is passionate about women’s rights and spends a large part of her time working with the Toronto Rape Crisis Centre among other feminist organizations, has had enough and believes it is time to make some noise and get active surrounding the issue. Erika is very happy to reclaim the word ’slut’ by challenging these harmful myths and stereotypes that are so widely accepted by our sexist culture.

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Raisa Bhuiyan

Outreach Coordinator

Raisa Bhuiyan is an enthusiast, particularly of gritty grassroots activism and events that bring people together to mobilize against painstakingly dangerous social norms. She’s also harbouring a pathological fear of biographies, especially the type that has to be typed out in a box.

But if you really wanna know, do know that she squirted out the 2% milk she was drinking right through her nose when she heard about the don’t-dress-like-a-slut-suggestion that a Toronto Police officer made on her campus.

At the moment, Raisa is ridiculously excited about how communities of people have become energized enough to open up a space for a much needed conversation on how the integration of different strategies and different hystories can help SlutWalk better engage with the new paradigms of feminist organizing.

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Colleen Westendorf

Organizer

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Laura McLean

Volunteers Coordinator

Laura McLean is a feminist who is passionate about equality in our society. She’s interested in breaking down stereotypical social norms that create and sustain numerous inequalities within our society.

Laura was outraged but not surprised by the comment made to York students about not dressing like a slut in order to avoid getting raped. These views within rape culture are normalized and assumed far too often and this needs to stop.

Currently Laura is a recent post graduate seeking a career with a non profit organization that focuses on gender and/or sexuality equality. She is very excited about joining SlutWalk Toronto and can’t wait to see the changes that have happened and will continue to happen.

 

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