Our Arms Are Open
One Line Every Survivor Needs to Hear is #IBelieveYou. One Line for all of Alberta
The Alberta One-Line is a province-wide central platform for sexual assault support services. Our private, toll-free talk-text-and chat service that connects individuals who have been impacted by sexual violence to specialized support. Our message is simple: we believe you, it’s not your fault, and when you’re ready, help is only a smartphone away.
The Alberta One-Line project was born out of the success of Alberta’s #IBelieveYou campaign, which has dramatically change the way the public responds to sexually assault survivors. Traditionally, survivors have avoided reaching out for support for fear of not being believed. #IBelieveYou has dramatically changed the way Albertans respond to survivors. Fear is now being replaced with confidence, and demand for services has significantly increased. The Alberta One Line is a response to that heightened demand.
Why a specialized phone text chat line?
- The privacy and convenience provided by crisis phone/text/chat lines help reduce traditional barriers for support. Technology provides access, control, anonymity, and psychological safety that makes it easier to reach out. One-Line will ensure all Albertans have equal access to services no matter where they live.
- Responding to sexual violence is a special skill that isn’t shared by all professionals and paraprofessionals. Specialized support is important because sexual violence is associated with a high-degree of shame and self-blame.
- Responders will help survivors understand where services are located, make a plan of action, and provide recommendations for carrying it out.
Text and chat are the dominant forms of communication among younger survivors.
What can you do?
- Join our “Arms Open” social media campaign. Send a message of love and support to survivors by posting an image of yourself with “Arms Open” in front of your community welcome-sign. These images show that support is available to everyone, no matter where they live.
- Throughout the month of May, we will update that video with new photos from contributors from all over Alberta.
Albertans like you are helping to spread the word about the One-Line that every Albertan needs to know.
Together, we’re building a future free from sexual violence.
Remember to post using #IBelieveYou and #ArmsOpen:
Downloadables (for download and print)
Practical steps for responders:
While it is critical to address bystanders and perpetrators, responder education is equally vital—and often much more achievable. People want to be part of the solution. Here are some tips:
- If someone discloses to you, the best response is to start by believing. Believing is something you can show, do, and say.
- Unless a child is involved, reporting to police is optional, and there is no time limit on reporting.
- Respect their decision, whatever it may be
- The role of friends and family is not to play judge and jury, but to start by believing. When people start by believing, due process can happen, but the choice to report belongs to the survivor.
- Avoid asking “why” questions. Even people with the best intentions can sound accusatory.
- Let them know it’s not their fault. No one asks to be sexually assaulted. Other positive words include I’m sorry that happened, and how can I help.
- If you’ve doubted someone in the past, remember it’s never too late to start believing.
- Offer Alberta’s One Line for Sexual Violence as a resource