“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is,
‘What are you doing for others?'”
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Each generation is called upon to advance the arc of equity, justice and dignity by which our common humanity is measured. Making the workplace, the community and the campus safer for women is the spirit the animates The ZerONow Campaign I founded. — Kathleen Finlay.
The Zer0Now Campaign™ is a global advocacy dedicated to ending the harm of gender violence, sexual harassment and NDAs. Now in its second decade, The Zer0Now Campaign works to combat the conditions that lead to sexualized wrongdoing in the workplace, in the community and on the campus. We advocate before parliamentary and legislative committees, advise legislators to effect improvements in law and public policy, promote awareness of the health-related consequences associated with gender-based violence and sexual harassment, and work with victims and survivors to support their healing journey. We are compassion-oriented and trauma-informed in our approach. The lived experiences of countless victims who reach out to us every day from around the world inform our work, guide our policy initiatives and shape our media focus.
Since its founding, The Zer0Now Campaign has launched our Hire Us Back™ initiative to help rebuild careers often destroyed by retaliation, called for the elimination of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), advocated for greater transparency in the publication of complaint statistics (Bill C-65), urged the appointment of an independent federal commissioner reporting to parliament to investigate incidents and complaints in the federal public service, RCMP and military, and championed increased awareness of the role of trauma-informed practices in mitigating serious adverse outcomes.
The Zer0Now Campaign was founded by Kathleen Finlay, whose lived experience as a survivor, unstinting support for victims of institutional betrayal and forthright public policy advocacy have made her an internationally recognized voice for advancing the fundamental right of women to live, learn and work in a safer and more respectful world.
Our Strategic Focus
Fostering a compassionate, trauma–informed culture.
The Zer0Now Campaign™ works to support victims of sexual violence and sexual harassment by fostering a culture of compassion infused by trauma-informed care, and by combating the cycle of fear, silence and re-victimization that acts as a disincentive to women coming forward.
Exposing institutional betrayal.
Preventing sexual violence and the waves of harm that often follow does not happen by accident. We work to expose the enablers of institutional betrayal and the toxic pain that is so often unleashed against victims at the highest levels by ill-intentioned organizational actors.
Addressing the health risks of sexual violence.
Our HealingNow initiative calls for a national strategy to recognize and address the often life-altering emotional and physical conditions, such as PTSD, depression and high blood pressure, that frequently result from sexual violence and related institutional betrayal. We believe it is imperative that a trauma-informed culture is available at all stages to support victims who come forward. Kathleen Finlay urged mandatory trauma-informed training for all MPs, Senators and senior staff, as well as federally-appointed judges. Her call for the adoption of trauma-informed practices was also made on her behalf on the floor of the Ontario Legislature. The Zer0Now Campaign advocates for a re-imagined approach to preventing suicide, which is becoming an epidemic in certain parts of the population and remains a high risk for victims of sexual violence.
Championing smart changes in law and corporate policy.
Bold changes are needed to effect true zero tolerance and the creation of a victim-centered support culture. We advocate for experience-informed changes in legislation and in organizational paradigms to make the workplace, the campus and the community safer and more victim-focused. Several governments, including the government of Canada, have already adopted our sunshine law proposals.
Helping victims heal.
We work with victims of sexual violence and sexual harassment to support them in achieving better outcomes. Women around the world regularly use our Online Outreach Clinic to share their experiences and to seek mentoring and support. We are one of the few resources in the world that responds to the call for help 24/7, including nights, weekends and holidays. We do this without any government funding. All costs are borne by Zer0Now’s founder, Kathleen Finlay. By sharing the learned experiences of survivors with victims on a one-to-one basis, and by offering a compassionate voice and a listening ear, we support women in making informed choices about what is often an inflection point in their lives.
Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) inflict an additional and long term layer of harm on victims of gender violence and sexual harassment. The ZerONow Campaign has been campaigning for an end to NDAs longer than any other advocacy of its kind. In 2018, we proposed a legislated ban at the federal level during consideration of Bill C-65. No other witness made any reference to NDAs nor were any MPs or senators interested in the subject. Since that time, we have published dozens of op-eds on the dangers of NDAs, participated in numerous media interviews and contributed significantly to a greater awareness of the harm these devices cause. Bringing an end to NDAs everywhere, and removing existing agreements, continue to be a major focus of our advocacy and outreach.
Working with the media and commenting on breaking news.
Promoting awareness of the consequences of sexual misconduct and the way it is often mishandled is an important step in reaching zero harm. We work with the media to give voice to the incomplete mission of the #MeToo era and to ensure that the realities and abuses faced by everyday women in the everyday world are also understood and subjected to journalistic attention. Our op-eds and opinion commentaries offer fresh insight and analysis, while our knowledge-base of personal victim narratives and scholarly contributions enables quotable insights on breaking news not available anywhere else.
We believe if it’s not victim-focused, survivor-driven reform, it’s not real reform. That’s the knowledge and approach The Zer0Now Campaign™ brings. Experience is what separates myth from reality when it comes to combating sexual violence in all its forms. Compassion and understanding is what moves women from the shadows of victimhood into the bright hope of survivorship.
Whether you are a victim of sexual violence or sexual harassment, a survivor rebuilding your life, a scholar looking at the trauma of institutional betrayal or a legislator leading in ground-breaking change, we are always happy to hear your voice. You can contact us here.