If you’re only working with female victims, you don’t get the most pleasant view of men.


OCASA development co-ordinator Angelo Libeau said the historically women-only organisation had changed its constitution to work with people of all genders.

“There was a of complexity around what it actually means to be a safe space for survivors.

“We said `if we’re going to make these changes, can we still maintain our feminist philosophies’, and we talked about it for a really long time, and then we went `absolutely you can – it’s about how you manage the space to keep everybody safe’.”

He described the change as “quite huge”.

“There’s a lot of different things happening in one go.”

As for the name change, Mr Libeau said that was partly because of community feedback.

“It wasn’t necessarily representative of what our service can provide, because people have a really set idea of what `crisis’ means, or what `rape’ means, so we took that on board.

“It’s not necessarily a softening of it, but it encapsulates the wider work that we do.”

Much of the organisation’s work was around supporting people in the longer term, he said.

The organisation had about 100 people on its books, but each person had a complex variety
of needs, he said.

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