Today on International Women’s Day 2023, Women’s Shelters Canada’s Tech Safety Canada Project is launching its website, www.techsafety.ca!
Tech Safety Canada equips shelter and transition house workers with the knowledge and resources they need to support women, children, and gender-diverse people with their experiences of technology-facilitated gender-based violence (TFGBV). TFGBV is when technology (such as a smartphone, computer, smartwatch, or a smart home device) is misused to commit violent abusive acts such as domestic violence, harassment, stalking, sexual assault, impersonation, extortion, and the non-consensual filming and sharing of intimate images. According to Women’s Shelters Canada data from 2022, more than 96% of responding domestic violence shelters in Canada served women who had experienced TFGBV.
The website offers three pathways for people to learn more about technology-facilitated gender-based violence: those experiencing it, frontline workers supporting those experiencing it, and anyone else who is interested in learning more about using technology safely. The project’s first two toolkits, The Technology Safety Toolkit and The Tech Safety Planning Toolkit, are currently on the website, with toolkits on preserving digital evidence, legal remedies, teen dating violence, and agency use of technology debuting over the coming months.
Regional trainings for shelter and transition house workers have already begun and will continue over the rest of the year.
This work is scaling up BC Society of Transition House’s existing Technology Safety Project and draws on the experience of partners from WESNET Australia, the National Network to End Domestic Violence in the United States, and Refuge in the United Kingdom. This two-year project is made possible by funding from the department of Women and Gender Equality (WAGE) Canada.