in

SISterhood

"I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own." 

Strength

- Audre Lorde

We are a group of women who have survived prison and are now working collaboratively with allies to end imprisonment for women. We are against all forms of violence against women, including the state inflicted violence of the carceral system.

Call us Toll free

1-800-747-5381

news

  • Advocacy support 

  • Legal and other referrals

  • To contribute to SIS records 

  • To get involved

  • Peer support 

Call us for...

P4W wall
OTT500371355_high
FB_IMG_1567812450197
IMG_0868
97221386_127509608918102_678314076366962
96368868_124870485848681_126389496838514

Mission

values

&

Light and Shadow

    SIS is driven by a vision of prison abolition. We recognize that systems are inherently sexist, racist and homophobic. 

2   SIS works towards women's substantive equality.

We understand the far reaching effects of violence against

women and identify that a world where women are all free

can only exist once violence against women in all forms is abolished. SIS endorses a focus on structural inequalities and not individuals.

3       SIS endeavours to prioritize and privilege women with lived experience. SIS commits to actively placing women with lived experience at the heart of our activities. We encourage all of our members to unlearn the conditioning of sexist and oppressive powers through consciousness raising, and we understand that the path to liberation must first and foremost be guided by the voices of our sisters inside. 

4     With these considerations in mind, the primary purpose of SIS is to work towards the absolute abolition of Canada's women's prisons. SIS will work to reduce the numbers of women in and returning to prison and will only engage in reform where those efforts do not forfeit a vision of abolition.

5    SIS works toward the abolition

of women's prisons through public education, law and policy reform and advocacy with and on behalf of women with lived experience of criminalization and institutionalization. SIS promotes the substantive equality of women through the building and maintenance of resources, services and spaces by organizations and governments, which are designed by and for women, which are accessible to women, in particular criminalized women and women who are at a risk of criminalization. 

Grunge Texture

    SIS is driven by a vision of prison abolition. We recognize that systems are inherently sexist, racist and homophobic. 

2   SIS works towards women's substantive equality.

We understand the far reaching effects of violence against

women and identify that a world where women are all free

can only exist once violence against women in all forms is abolished. SIS endorses a focus on structural inequalities and not individuals.

3       SIS endeavours to prioritize and privilege women with lived experience. SIS commits to actively placing women with lived experience at the heart of our activities. We encourage all of our members to unlearn the conditioning of sexist and oppressive powers through consciousness raising, and we understand that the path to liberation must first and foremost be guided by the voices of our sisters inside. 

4     With these considerations in mind, the primary purpose of SIS is to work towards the absolute abolition of Canada's women's prisons. SIS will work to reduce the numbers of women in and returning to prison and will only engage in reform where those efforts do not forfeit a vision of abolition.

5    SIS works toward the abolition

of women's prisons through public education, law and policy reform and advocacy with and on behalf of women with lived experience of criminalization and institutionalization. SIS promotes the substantive equality of women through the building and maintenance of resources, services and spaces by organizations and governments, which are designed by and for women, which are accessible to women, in particular criminalized women and women who are at a risk of criminalization. 

From the inside out

Strength In Sisterhood was originally founded in 1995 by Gayle Horii and other women in prison to highlight the ways that women's prisons were not only unresponsive to, but punitive of women's lived realities. Many elements of the structures and operations of Canada's prisons for women were modelled after men's prisons in such a way that circumvented addressing women's social inequalities and pathways to criminalization. This neglect continues today. 

Distressed by a severe lack of change since the Arbour Commission, our group has taken up lessons passed down from the original SIS members. Honoured by their legacy, the revival of SIS endeavours anew to promote the dismantling of sexist, colonial, racist and capitalist systems of structural inequality and oppression. SIS promotes the development of laws, resources and policies through consultation with and involvement of women with lived experience of incarceration.

SIS commits to actively placing women with lived prison experience at the heart of our activities. We encourage all of our members to unlearn the conditioning of sexist and oppressive powers through consciousness raising, and we understand that the path to liberation must first and foremost be guided by the voices of our sisters inside.