Overview

Call 911 to help someone who is in immediate danger, or when you do not feel safe stepping in to help someone.

Our commitment to end sexual violence brings together community organizations and 10 government ministries to deliver a coordinated, province-wide response to sexual violence in Alberta. It was developed through extensive consultation with frontline providers, advocates and survivors.

Commitment statement

"Every Albertan has the right to live free from violence. Perpetrators of sexual violence violate that right.

"The Government of Alberta does not tolerate these abuses of power and control. Though anyone can experience sexual violence, we recognize it impacts women and girls most.

"We stand firmly with survivors, advocates and community agencies to stop sexual violence in all its forms.

"We commit to supporting survivors, improving our response, and shifting to a culture of consent by advancing gender equality.

"We will work until all survivors are believed and supported, and this violence is eradicated from our communities."

Our guiding principles

The following principles guide our work:

  • Sexual violence is a violation of the fundamental human right to safety and bodily autonomy.
  • Sexual violence is a form of gender-based violence and is rooted in systemic and structural inequality and social dynamics of power and oppression.
  • Sexual violence is a public health issue that causes significant trauma and impacts the physical, mental, emotional and sexual health outcomes of people, communities and societies.
  • Efforts to prevent and address sexual violence are based on the rights, needs and wishes of people who have experienced sexual violence.
  • Diversity and inclusive analysis is applied to policies, programs and initiatives in order to respond to the different situations and experiences of those impacted by sexual violence, and consider their identity factors.
  • Every survivor has the right to be treated with dignity and respect. They cannot be discriminated against based on:
    • gender identity or expression
    • age
    • race or ethnicity
    • ability
    • health status
    • citizenship status
    • any other characteristic or identity factor

How we are helping

Our commitment includes actions in 3 key areas to stop and prevent sexual violence:

  • Shift the culture – by championing a culture of consent and gender equality.
  • Improve the response – by ensuring that the social, health, justice and education systems respond effectively to sexual violence and harassment.
  • Support survivors – by funding community agencies that help survivors and run education and prevention programs.

Shift the culture

We are shifting to a culture of consent and advancing gender equality by:

Improve the response

Every survivor deserves to be treated with respect and dignity.

We are working to ensure government, social service agencies, health care, law enforcement, schools and post-secondary institutions respond effectively to sexual violence, including sexual assault and sexual harassment, by:

  • supporting sexual assault centres and agencies with stable funding to increase access to counselling, cut wait times and provide crisis help in more communities
  • supporting services through the Sexual Assault Response Team of registered nurses and other professionals – in health, policing, victim services, counselling – who have specialized education in sexual assault care to work throughout the province
  • addressing sexual exploitation as part of a 9-point Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking
  • providing training and resources to police through the Sexual Violence Police Advisory Committee to:
    • strengthen police services’ responses and investigations
    • help survivors know about their rights and available support services
  • developing a trauma and sexual assault investigation online module that will be available for all law enforcement to address the topics of:
    • law and consent
    • trauma and memory
    • myths, biases and stereotypes
    • communicating with victims
  • publishing a best practice guide for law enforcement investigations into sexual violence
  • publishing a collection of sexual violence resource cards
  • increasing access to the legal system for survivors of family and sexual violence by removing the time limit to bring forward civil claims
  • improving access to sexual assault services in rural and remote communities

Support survivors

Sexual violence is never okay. We stand firmly with survivors by:

Sexual Violence Awareness Month

May is Sexual Violence Awareness Month in Alberta. It was first proclaimed on May 1, 2018 when the government launched the commitment to end sexual violence.

Community organizations plan events across the province to raise awareness, challenge attitudes and promote a culture of consent.

To find out more, see Violence, abuse and bullying prevention events.

Additional resources

For more information about sexual violence, see these resources:

Fact sheets

Ending Sexual Violence in Alberta

Respect Sexual Consent (PDF, 258 KB)

Sexual Harassment in Sport and Recreation

Initiatives

Disclosing domestic violence history

Family violence prevention

Increasing safety for Indigenous women and girls

National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

Preventing violence against women and girls

Protecting patients from sexual abuse or misconduct