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Legal Costs for MVK

$18,355 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 221 people in 10 months
Created October 23, 2018
LE
Lisa Elser
on behalf of Metro Vancouver Kink Society
Metro Vancouver Kink Society (“MVK”) is the largest kink non-for-profit organization in Western Canada and is being sued for acting to protect the community.

In the fall of 2016, a Fetlife member posted about multiple instance of abuse by a well known Vancouver area top. This individual runs events at his home, and had largely left the public community. As the smoke cleared from that post, people began coming forward with accounts of abuse both by this man directly and by others at the events he hosts in his home. There were meetings held in his home, at his request. The MVK board held space for people to come forward in confidence and share their experiences.

MVK held two town hall meetings for its community and finally published an open letter providing a summary of those accounts ( to protect the privacy of the victims) and stating that MVK would not support, recommend, or rent space from this person.

Now both MVK and each board member individually is being sued for speaking out and these board members have been outed. Two more lawsuits were filed against 4 more members of our community. In total, he's suing 15 people to keep them from speaking.

In Canada, truth is a defence. Statements made in the public interest are also protected from libel. MVK is willing to see this through rather than pretend that the victims were lying and apologize to the person who caused harm.

But the fight isn’t cheap. MVK has lawyers who are donating their time and energy, but going to trial is expensive and cannot be done pro bono. When we were unable to settle, MVK had to hire a law firm, and is now in the process of trying to get the case dismissed under new anti-SLAPP legislation.

More and more, communities are asking their leaders to speak out, to call out the ‘missing stairs’ who prey on new people and who cause harm. But there’s a cost to that. MVK and the individual board members are paying that cost right now in stress, time, loss of privacy, and in money.

We can only help with the money part. If this is your community, pitch in. Even if it’s not your community, even if you’re in another country, help see that this doesn’t set a terrifying precedent where community organizations and community leaders cannot speak out, and where abusers have no fear of being called out.


No community is safe if organizations and individuals cannot speak out. Please help MVK and show that we'll all come together to support each other.
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We just got word that our case probably won't be heard until October due to scheduling issues with both attorneys.

On the one hand we would so love to have this over with. On the other hand, it may well mean that a few more SLAPP cases are adjudicated in BC, which we feel can only help us. We have a strong case but it's always tricky being one of the first to be heard.

In the meantime, we're still raising funds, and

WE HAVE AN AUCTION! With so many amazing things. You can do well by doing good and score some primo goods including lessons with some of the best instructors in the world, and tickets to top conferences.

https://www.32auctions.com/defendMVK
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Holy cannoli!

My post box in the US is filled with rope, signed books, canes, corset covers.... We've got lessons, event tickets, class passes, photo shoots.

We even got Zamil out of retirement to offer shibari lessons.

Take a look at what's already in the auction, and keep watching. I'm adding things every day and it's going to be amazing.

You can't bid yet, but you can register to bid and favourite items so you don't miss anything

https://www.32auctions.com/defendMVK
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A busy day! We showed up at the courthouse, but it was busy there too so the hearing on our application is deferred until August 6th.

But CBC picked up on the story and this was in the news today. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/kink-court-bdsm-50shades-1.5215394

It's a good, objective report.

Please share this and encourage people to donate if you can. The hours we spent this morning at the courthouse were 100% billable and while our lawyers are whip smart and dedicated, they are Not Cheap.
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Affidavits were submitted 10 days ago. Depositions were Thursday and Friday. Our board president spent eight hours being grilled by the other side's lawyer, while the person suing MVK and her looked on.

Now we wait for the court date.

If you know our president, send her some love. She's tough and smart and committed, but the stress of this situation is horrible.

And if you're able to donate or share this page with others, please do.

We are also putting together a fundraising auction. If you make things, produce events, teach classes, write books.... please consider contributing!
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$18,355 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 221 people in 10 months
Created October 23, 2018
LE
Lisa Elser
on behalf of Metro Vancouver Kink Society
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$50
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3 days ago
AM
$100
Andrew Martens
10 days ago
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$10
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11 days ago
SI
$25
Sahadeva Ishaya
16 days ago
$20
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17 days ago
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$50
Kendra Fowles
17 days ago
$50
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18 days ago
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Bill Myrick
18 days ago
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$150
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19 days ago
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