An interview with Sera Davidow, Executive Director of Wildflower Alliance on their Peer Support Line and the founding principles of not tracing calls or contacting police without consent.
By Karin Jervert –
Sera Davidow is a filmmaker, activist, advocate, author, and mother of two very busy kids. As a survivor of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse as a child and relationship violence as an adult, Sera has faced many challenges throughout her own healing process, including many ups and downs with suicidal thoughts, and self-injury. At present, she spends much of her time working as Director of the Wildflower Alliance (formerly known as the Western Mass Recovery Learning Community), which includes Afiya Peer Respite, recently recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one of about two dozen exemplary, rights-based programs operating across the world. She also serves on several boards including the Massachusetts Disability Law Center (DLC) Board of Directors, the DLC’s Council Against Institutional and Psychiatric Abuse (CAIPA), as an advisory board member for the National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma, and Mental Health (NCDVTM), and as a founding Board member of Hearing Voices USA. You can learn more about Sera and her work in an April, 2018 article in Sun Magazine
This interview is the second in a series of conversations being conducted over the next few months around the issue of hotline tracing and intervention. The first interview was with Vanessa Green, founder of Call the Blackline. It is part of Mad in America’s Suicide Hotline Transparency Project, which was born out of the belief that creating transparency and public access around suicide hotline intervention and call-tracing policies should be a priority. This project includes a directory of lines that do not trace or intervene without consent, a public poll, survivor interviews, and an open call for art. Please visit the project page to find out how you can participate.
The transcript below has been edited for length and clarity. Listen to the audio of the interview here.