So… Just when I was starting to relax and forget about the whole IWW fiasco…..
On Sunday I found out some completely bizarre news. Apparently BD (who has harassed me and others) took the Melbourne IWW branch, in particular the secretary TB, to the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission. HREOC is mediation, but if one side refuses to participate then the case is marked as not resolved. BD could have used this to say that his case had merit, so IWW members were compelled to attend.
Apparently what he wanted from this mediation was a written apology from IWW. Failing that he wanted them to give him money so he could sue me for libel over this post. Obviously, as his claims of discrimination were total BS, he didn’t end up getting either of these things.
I was astounded that someone could go to HREOC over an issue like this. However I have been told by a friend who’s worked in related areas that it’s actually very common for individuals to misuse it in this way.
As if this wasn’t crazy enough I also found out something else. An anonymous person contacted me and others to warn us that certain male IWW members and former members were infiltrating online feminist groups. They have been setting up fake accounts as women and targeting groups such as Reclaim the Night and Monitoring the Left’s Support 4 Rape Culture in order to spy and make trouble. They have also been targeting individuals who have called them out for misogynist behavior.
The IWW members involved in this found out fairly quickly that someone was warning people about them, responding with this post attacking me and another woman:
The whole post is full bigotry against mentally ill people. After people complained about this in the comments, they amended it slightly to call us “malicious” instead of “crazies”. This really isn’t any kind of improvement. I’ve been really tempted to correct/explain what they’ve said about my mental health… But nobody should have to make public explanations about their health. If people don’t realise why this post is so fucked I recommend they do some reading about mental health at Beyond Blue or similar organisations. They should also read up on how abusers routinely try to paint women they attack as crazy and play the victim.
I have also been tempted to go through and explain why everything said about either of us in the post is lies. But again, if people can’t see how ridiculously dodgy the post looks already then there isn’t much point.
Anyway, it seems that the Australian national branch of the IWW asked for this post to be removed, but couldn’t do anything because the Perth Branch had disaffiliated. Despite this the post was eventually removed… I’m not sure why.
While I’m glad the post was removed, it’s just not good enough. This has now gone on for a year. Way too many individuals have been victimised. It has been extremely difficult those of us who’ve been the main targets of this harassment. This isn’t just a case of a few bad eggs. The IWW needs to take collective responsibility for what has been done by it’s members and using it’s resources:
– It needs to print a retraction of the statement and an apology.
– It needs to deal with the nest of MRAs that seems to have taken root inside it.
– It also needs to apologise to the individuals and organisations that it’s members have been stalking.
And that’s just to start…