Today on Women’s Magazine, Margo Okazawa-Rey talks to four young feminist leaders in the anti-violence and anti-sexual assault movement who are present or former Brown University students, to look at the less visible and less talked about aspects of the coronavirus. They look at what is happening interpersonally and in the home, and how the Shelter in Place Policy affects women and other folks in precarious and already-vulnerable positions, especially people with disabilities and incarcerated persons. And they look at what happens when you consider race and class as critical aspects of their experiences. They discuss the emerging data and observations regarding the increasing violence in various forms that are resulting from or exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.
Camila Pelsinger, senior at Brown
University, is a leader in sexual violence prevention on campus, including as a coordinator for the Brown University Sexual Assault Peer Education program. As Vice President of Brown’s student government, she developed a transformative justice program to support community-based approaches to addressing harm that prioritizes the needs of victims and survivors.
Rose Houglet, sophomore at Brown, covers gender issues and campus activism for campus publications and volunteers as a Sexual Assault Peer Educator. She also conducts gender-based violence research that examines community intervention methods at Rhode Island middle and high schools.
Stefanie Lyn Kaufman-Mthimkhulu (pronounced: tim-koo-loo), a graduate of Brown, is the Founder and Executive Director of Project LETS, a national grassroots organization led by and for folks with lived experience of mental illness/madness, Disability, trauma, and neurodivergence. Their work and community-organizing specialize in building radical peer support collectives and community mental health care structures outside of state-sanctioned systems of “care,” grounded in principles of anti-racism and Disability, Transformative, and Healing Justice.
Xochi Cartland is a junior at Brown University. With a background in Disability Justice, she is a staff member at Project LETS and is Student Coordinator, alongside Camila, of the Transformative Justice Program. Her primary interest resides in building grassroots infrastructures for responding to harm and violence that operate outside of institutions.