Beyond Awareness: Tools for Supporting Sexual Assault Survivors


SPEAKER: Julie Lalonde, Campaign Manager, Draw the Line Campaign

One in three Canadian women will experience sexual violence in their lifetime. For the first time in recorded Canadian history, women are now more likely than men to be victims of violent crime. We hear more and more about sexual assault in the news and awareness has never been higher. But awareness does not create social change, and telling women to report is an inadequate approach unless we equip communities with tools to respond.

In this interactive session, Julie S. Lalonde will give participants an overview of common responses to sexual violence. Why don’t survivors report? Why do victims report? How do people typically respond? From there, participants will critically engage with barriers to sexual violence intervention and look at the best approaches to supporting a survivor.

Participants will leave the presentation with concrete tools for responding to sexual assault disclosures in both professional and personal contexts.

Key Learnings:

  1. Common responses to sexual violence.
  2. Creating the best environment for survivors to disclose.
  3. Tools for responding to sexual assault disclosures.


Julie S. Lalonde is an internationally-recognized women’s rights advocate and public speaker. She works with various organizations dedicated to ending sexual violence, engaging bystanders and building communities of support. Julie is a frequent media commentator on women’s issues, and her work has appeared on Al Jazeera, CBC’s The National, The Globe and Mail, TVO’s The Agenda, FLARE magazine and more. She is the site director of Hollaback! Ottawa and the manager of, a provincial anti-sexual violence campaign funded by the province of Ontario. Julie has won numerous awards for her work, including the Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case. Read our interview with Julie S. Lalonde here!