It's Not Just 700 (INJ700) is a volunteer run, non-funded organization, that provides camaraderie, informal support and advocates for those impacted by Military Sexual Misconduct and Military Sexual Trauma (MST) in the Canadian Armed Forces.
INJ700 is an independent, unfunded, volunteer-run organization of over 593 members that all advocate for survivors of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and gender-based discrimination they experienced while serving in the Canadian Armed Forces.
With a volunteer Board of Directors providing guidance and collaboration with external stakeholders, we also provide informal peer-to-peer camaraderie, a social network as well as informational resources to those who need help accessing medical care and other forms of support. Our members (serving and veterans of the CAF) make up our membership in our Private Facebook Group; these individuals directly experienced sexual misconduct and subsequent trauma. Our hope is that the informal support provided assists those impacted by MST in their journey of recovery.
Our successful history of advocacy efforts has ensured that inappropriate sexual behaviour and sexual violence in the Canadian military can no longer be denied, tolerated or encouraged.
Our community is here so that no one has to go through Military Sexual Trauma (MST) alone. We are here for our peers as best as we can be while on our own healing journeys.
Members in our Private Facebook group must be veterans and/or serving CAF Members, and must have experienced MST.
Note: In order to preserve confidentiality and eligibility, verification of service may be required.
It'sJust700 (IJ700) was founded in May 2015 by Marie-Claude Gagnon in response to the Madame Deschamp's Report on Sexual Misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). MC's tireless efforts have helped create real and lasting change to ensure that MST survivors are treated equitably by the CAF, the Department of National Defence (DND), and Veteran's Affairs Canada (VAC). She helped highlight the many and various ways that MST survivors have been systematically discriminated against, and applied enough pressure on the Government of Canada that many of the roadblocks to recovery have been acknowledged and addressed.
It was the existence of IJ700 that provided a space for survivors to reflect on the Class Action Harassment suit won by RCMP members and decide collectively to embark upon one of their own against the CAF. This group is where the three lead plaintiffs volunteered from, and many members from IJ700 attended the hearings in Ottawa that led to the successful Class Action.
This Class Action suit provided the impetus and funding for the creation of VAC services specifically tailored to survivors of MST. Not only has this resulted in more claims for PTSD attributable to MST being approved, it has also overturned many previous rejected Disability Award applications to VAC. These approved claims have provided survivors with a new sense of feeling valued, and their trauma validated as real and believable.
Our community owes MC a debt of gratitude for her service, passion, and accomplishments.
In June 2021 Marie-Claude stepped down to focus on her family and career, and a volunteer Board of Directors was formed. In order to mark this significant change, the movement name was changed to It's Not Just 700 (INJ700). With much research done in the area of Military Sexual Misconduct and MST in Canada, it is recognized through this work, that it's not just 700 affected; it is so many more and includes immediate family members.
It was with this in mind, as well as the transition to new leadership, that we felt it was an appropriate time to make the name change. But to be clear, while the name has changed, the mission and vision the MC set out with remains the same - to ensure that no serving member of the CAF or Veteran has to face MST alone.
The motto “Nothing about us without us” or “Nihil de nobis, sine nobis” was coined by Hungarians in the 1840s when they were fighting to have their rights and uniqueness recognized as part of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Before that, it was used as a rallying cry among Eastern European labor organizers and in the very distant past, came from a sixteenth century law limiting the power of a king.
Disability rights activist James Charlton traced the origin of “Nothing about us without us” to South African disability rights advocates in the 1980’s.
In the present day, “Nothing about us without us” has been adopted by others fighting for self-empowerment and self-determination. But, it is best known as a slogan of the disability rights movement. “Nothing about us without us” continues to be used to unlock the freedom of marginalized people.