In response to ongoing abuses of women’s rights, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and her supporters established the AHA Foundation in 2007 to help protect and defend the rights of women in the West from oppression justified by religion and culture.
The AHA Foundation works to protect and reinforce the basic rights and freedoms of women and girls, including security and control of their own bodies, access to an education, the ability to work outside the home and control their own income, freedom of expression and association, and the myriad other basic civil rights defined under the laws of Western democracies and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Foundation is opposed to the adoption of dual legal systems to adjudicate family disputes in religious families and supports the separation of all religions and the State.
The AHA Foundation engages in four primary activities to protect and defend the rights of women and girls in the West from oppression committed in the name of religion and culture: investigate, inform, influence, and intervene.
The AHA Foundation investigates instances of violence against women and girls in the West that are justified in the name of religion and culture. We compile data on these crimes, which are not currently tracked by any law enforcement or government agency in the United States.
The AHA Foundation informs the public about these instances of oppression of women and girls in the United States and other Western countries. The Foundation compiles news articles, publishes reports, and hosts conferences to spread the word about the continued oppression of women and girls in the U.S. committed in the name of religion and culture.
The AHA Foundation works to persuade politicians and policymakers to prioritize the enforcement of existing laws that protect women’s rights and, where necessary, to create special legislation to protect the rights and freedoms of women and girls from oppression committed in the name of religion and culture. See our Legislative Outreach page for examples of our legislative efforts.
The Foundation is setting up models of appropriate intervention and training materials for law enforcement and service providers to guide first responders on best practices to protect and defend the victims of such crimes in the United States. We want to bring the models and training to first responders and law enforcement in every community where such crimes are likely to occur. The Foundation is also creating national and regional databases and resource guides for girls and women in distress so that we can link them with social workers, attorneys, safe houses, and individuals and institutions qualified to deal with cases of crime, maltreatment and abuse in the religious and cultural contexts.