Saving Feminist Anti-Violence Agencies from Self-Destruction
The author first experienced a women’s shelter when she and her mother were two of the first residents in Toronto’s Interval House in 1974. Her research is drawn from that experience, her own years of working in shelters and sexual assault centres and the experiences of her fellow workers. Adams witnessed hierarchies that set apart clients and management, where an executive director and managers abused power in the same way she had experienced in the outside’ world of men. Perhaps most heartbreaking, she witnessed the most egalitarian, community-based, healthy and peaceful group of women she had come to know be destroyed by an agency devoid of feminist leadership, drunk on fear and dysfunction, which accused women of running a ‘cult.’ In this book Adams seeks to address these issues and find solutions.