Like many of you, here at WCSAP we spent much of yesterday and this morning watching the judicial committee hearings. Unfortunately, what we have watched is members of our government systematically fail survivors, again. It is unacceptable that we still live in a culture where survivors have their motives questioned, are accused of lying, and shamefully put on trial to defend themselves.
Today, no one can better encapsulate the experience of survivors all over this country than Ana Maria Archila and Maria Gallagher. Approaching Senator Flake after he had said he would vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh this morning, they spoke their truth to power:
You're telling all women that they don't matter, that they should just stay quiet because if they tell you what happened to them you are going to ignore them. That's what happened to me, and that's what you are telling all women in America, that they don't matter.
Don't look away from me. Look at me and tell me that it doesn't matter what happened to me. That you will let people like that go into the highest court of the land and tell everyone what they can do with their bodies.
Shortly after, Flake made his call for a vote delay and FBI investigation. We would not be at this moment if these survivors had not poured out their souls in the elevator. Our stories do make a difference.
We continue to stand together to advocate on behalf of survivors and amplify their voices. We will not be silenced. We will only get louder.
Thank you to survivors — those who are speaking out and changing history and those who are right now taking hotline calls for other survivors.
It is without doubt heartbreaking to continue to be exposed to the barrage of victim blaming statements and dismissals so present throughout this process. Please know you are all on our minds and in our hearts. We are so thankful that we have each other to hold each other up.
If you need support, visit our Find Help page to be connected with a Community Sexual Assault Program in Washington State.