It’s a good bet that domestic violence will touch the life of every single American, of every circumstance, at some point in their lifetime; and it will leave a devastating impact on the women, men, children, relatives, friends, co-workers and even clergy involved.
Below are tips, podcasts of radio shows, blog posts and other resources for information and assistance. If you need immediate help, contact the Domestic Violence Hotline @ 1.800.799.SAFE.
- SUSAN Guest-Hosts on WBAI 99.5FM: Orders of Protection & GPS Monitoring
On September 20, 2012, in preparation for Domestic Violence Awareness Month, I guest-hosted the Rape Declaration Forum radio show on WBAI 99.5FM, along with Rebecca Myles and Jay Grayce, talking about Orders of Protection with a GPS monitoring component — a life-saving tool that has had positive results in reducing domestic violence or intimate partner homicides.
One of the most powerful measures a person can take to stop the violence in an abusive relationship is obtaining an Order of Protection (also known as a Restraining Order). When the abuser is very violent and vindictive, however, Orders have been known to accelerate the violence; sometimes resulting in severe injury or death. Judges can increase the safety of victims, and reduce the number of intimate partner homicides, by granting a Restraining Order with a GPS monitoring component — but only 15 states currently offer this protection. Speaking as a Crime Prevention Specialist and co-chair of the Domestic Violence Committee of the New York Women’s Agenda, I feel this promising option needs to be given national attention.
CAUTION: Before filing for any kind of restraining order to protect yourself (and your family), get advice from a local or national domestic violence organization or a Family Justice Center to help you make up your mind.
My first guests on the show were District Attorney Charles Hynes (Brooklyn, NY) and Wanda Lucibello, Chief of the Special Victims Bureau. DA Hynes’ mother was a victim of domestic violence and he suffered greatly as a child. With that personal involvement, he’s been innovative and forward-thinking about offering domestic violence services throughout his term as District Attorney.
Then, I spoke with Stephen Grant, Director of Family Services for the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch, and Karen Jarmoc, Interim Executive Director, Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence. CT is one of the 15 states that offers GPS monitoring and it’s considered one of the most successful programs ever offered by the Judicial Branch.
Show Guests and Resources:
- Stephen Grant, Director, Family Services, State of CT Judicial Branch: http://www.jud.ct.gov/cssd/familysvs.htm
- Karen Jarmoc, Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence: (860) 282-7899 http://www.ctcadv.org/
- Rape Declaration Forum: WBAI 99.5FM (3rd Thursday of month, 9pm-10pm eastern): http://www.wbai.org/program.php?program=124
- New York Women’s Agenda: http://newyorkwomensagenda.org/
- Crime Prevention 101 Radio Show on Orders of Protection with GPS Monitoring Component: http://bit.ly/OP-GPS
- IF YOU’RE IN AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP AND NEED HELP: NYC Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-621-HOPE (4673): 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Help is available in 150 languages; IF YOU’RE IN IMMEDIATE PHYSICAL DANGER: CALL 911
- Family Justice Centers in Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx (wherever is closer to you): Call 311 for information
- Spanish-speaking Hotline & Services // Immigrants (legal or undocumented): VIOLENCE INTERVENTION PROGRAM: http://violenceinterventionprogram.org/ 800-664-5880
National DV Resources:
- National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233 http://www.thehotline.org/
- National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV): www.ncadv.org
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) materials: National Domestic Violence Awareness Month Project: http://dvam.vawnet.org
- Womens Law Center – http://www.womenslaw.org
- Legal Facts about Restraining Orders/ dHow.com: http://www.ehow.com/facts
- What is and How to Get a Restraining Order/about.com: http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/abusiverelationships/a/restrain_order.htm
- Times Up: A Guide On How To Leave And Survive Abusive And Stalking Relationships by Susan Murphy Milano. Tips on safety planning BEFORE and AFTER leaving an abusive relationship.
Smartphone Personal Safety Apps
- MyForce: Like OnStar for your cell phone with strong personal safety features, monitored 24/7 by trained operators. App is free; monitoring service is modest expense and in some states, the Crime Victim Board has paid for this technology for domestic violence victims. www.myforce.com
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #13 — Not Just Physical; What Constitutes Domestic Abuse?
Domestic violence is usually thought of as battering and characterized by behaviors ranging from shaking and shoving to marital rape to murder. Legally, however, domestic abuse may or may not include physical violence!
Domestic abuse includes a wide range of non-physical behavior such as emotional cruelty (explosive temper tantrums, intimidation via threats of violence, forced isolation from family, friends and avenues of assistance); constant belittling and insults (when alone or in front of others); extreme possessiveness and accusations of infidelity (especially if the person gets even minute attention from the opposite sex); stalking; forms of torture like sleep or food deprivation; taking away clothes to imprison the person in the home; and destroying the person’s property or harming beloved pets.
Domestic abuse can also be financial including controlling the finances and bill paying, making the person beg for money and/or not allowing the person to work outside the home so the person is financially dependent on the abuser.
Bottom line: Whether it’s a punch to the jaw or a verbal jab, it’s domestic abuse…and it’s inexcusable!
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #12 – Protest Offensive Media Coverage
Protest media coverage that excuses abusive behavior, blames the victim or trivializes abuse. Speak out against magazines, TV shows, movies and online media (including YouTube) that glorifies violence against women. The best way to make your voice heard is via the offending entity’s website, Facebook or Twitter page. Post your comments on your own social media sites as well and that of any group or organization you belong to.
If you’re a domestic violence survivor, speak out by writing an article about your experiences as a protest against offensive media.
National Center for Children Exposed to Violence: http://nccev.org/violence/media.html
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #11 – Promote Awareness
Ask your local library, supermarket, chain restaurants, department stores, houses of worship, etc. if you can regularly supply them with material from national and local domestic violence programs (they’ll give you all you want) to display by cash registers and leave around for women to quietly put into their pocketbook. Great group project!
Do you operate a beauty or nail salon, spa or a business that caters primarily to women? Follow the lead of Cut it Out, a national organization of hairdressers whose participating salon employees learn how to recognize the signs of domestic abuse in their clients and discreetly refer them to local resources. They’d be happy to offer you resources.
Other simple things you can do to promote awareness: Wear an appropriate T-shirt, sweatshirt, bracelet, purple ribbon or an item with the logo of a domestic violence organization. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (www.ncadv.org) sells clothing, posters and items that educate. The Clothesline Project features T-shirts decorated by survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault (and their families) to raise awareness of the issue and promote healing. Bring a Clothesline display to your neighborhood or organize a Clothesline session in your community.
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #10 – Donate a Cell Phone
Observe Domestic Violence Awareness Month by donating old or unwanted cell phones to domestic violence organizations or shelters. Better yet, even get your religious group, school or company to organize a phone drive.
First step: Go to eHow.com and look at this article titled How to Donate Your Old Cell Phone to Help Victims of Domestic Violence for instructions on things like erasing your phone’s address book, texts and confidential information.
Next: Where to donate? Start by contacting a domestic violence organization or women’s group in your area to see if they’re accepting phones. Otherwise, check out any of the groups listed below:
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #9 – Volunteer at a Domestic Violence Organization
To make Domestic Violence Awareness Month more meaningful for you, give the gift of your time and energy to a national organization or local group in your area that’s actively advocating to end domestic violence and help its victims. Monetary donations are welcome as well.
- National Coalition to End Domestic Violence: http://www.ncadv.org/
- Family Violence Prevention Fund: http://www.endabuse.org
- National Resource Center on Domestic Violence: http://www.nrcdv.org/
- National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women: http://www.ncdbw.org/
- National Network to End Domestic Violence: http://www.nnedv.org/
- Womenspace National Network to End Violence Against Immigrant Women: www.immigrantwomennetwork.org/
- CUT IT OUT: http://www.cutitout.org
- Face to Face National Domestic Violence Project: http://www.facetofacesurgery.org
- Give Back a Smile Cosmetic Dentistry Program: http://www.givebackasmile.com
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #8 – Adopt a Shelter
Give the gift of your time and/or money to a local shelter. Many times, the women and their families leave an abusive relationship with just the clothes on their backs and funding for shelters is very tight, so pretty much everything is needed. If you belong to a group or organization, get them to “adopt” too.
Some suggestions: Ask a local cosmetology school, hair or nail salon to sponsor a Day of Beauty for women in a shelter. Stores like Costco and BJs Wholesale Club could be asked to donate such items as toilet paper, shampoo, toothbrushes and other toiletries, laundry soap, clothes, furniture, children’s toys, books and school supplies. Items like this are in very short supply at shelters and there are lots of possibilities for contributions.
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #7 – Present a Domestic Violence Program to Your Organization
- National Coalition Against Domestic Violence: http://ncadv.org/
- Asian/Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project: http://www.dvrp.org/
- Ayuda (for Spanish-speaking survivors): http://www.ayudainc.org/template/index.cfm
- Jewish Women International: http://www.jwi.org
- Break the Cycle (teens and young adults): www.breakthecycle.org
- Men Can Stop Rape: http://www.mencanstoprape.org
- Yahoo Directory of DV Organizations: http://dir.yahoo.com/Society_and_Culture/Crime/Types_of_Crime/Domestic_Violence/Organizations/
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #6 – Address Domestic Violence in the Workplace
Does your employer have a policy for workplace safety? Too many lives–and billions of dollars–are lost every year because of being unprepared. The Future Without Violence group has workplace resources that can help. Also, check out the Partnership for Prevention for more information.
Employers Against Domestic Violence, a non-profit coalition formed in MA in 1997, helps businesses, hospitals and large corporations (like Verizon) all over the country formulate workplace policies to deal with domestic violence issues.
A great resource for workplace seminars and workplace domestic violence support groups: The Business of Me started by survivor, blogger and activist Nancy Salamone.
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #5 – Examine Your Relationships
Examine your own relationships honestly. If there’s a pattern of abuse in your life, it’s harming you, your children and those around you who love you as well. Take this quiz from the AARDVARC: An Abuse, Rape & Domestic Violence Aid & Resource Collection. And, be honest!
Here’s a helpful quiz: http://www.aardvarc.org/dv/abusequiz.shtml
For more clues: http://www.thehotline.org/is-this-abuse/am-i-being-abused-2/
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #4 – Teach the Boys Young
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #3 – Talk to Your God: Faith-Based Discussions
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #2 – Talk to Your Teen/Tween
Got a teenager or tweenager at home? Talk to them as soon as possible about what a healthy, non-violent relationship is. Check out Love Is Not-Abuse (www.loveisnotabuse.com) for resources and guidelines.
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month Tip #1 – Don’t Mind Your Own Business!
Know someone whose relationship concerns you? With an estimated 4 million victims a year in the United Stated, it’s a good bet you do. Let them know you’re there and willing to listen. The National Domestic Violence Hotline website has guidelines to help you express your concerns in the most productive manner.
- October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM)—a time to recommit to ending violence within our homes, our communities, our country and wherever in the world we can reach.
With an estimated four million victims a year, it’s a good bet that domestic violence–-and its devastating consequences to the women, men, children, relatives, friends and even co-workers of those involved–-will touch the life of every single American at some point in time. And, it’s not just a problem here in the US, domestic violence has been called a worldwide social epidemic! Though men are victims too, it is women who are its primary target and the statistics are grim.
Let’s raise our voices in remembrance of those who’ve died from this epidemic; reach out to those who are presently suffering abuse to tell them help IS out there, though it’s not an easy course to travel; and try to inform those youngsters who may be heading down the rocky road to abuse right now that there’s safer path to take and we WANT you to find that path.
Finally, let’s celebrate the resilience of those domestic violence survivors who are leading the way for us all.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month but every month should be! I’m going to post a tip a day for the whole month to make it more meaningful for you and perhaps provide assistance. Pass the tips along to everyone you know or are concerned about.
- Technology and Domestic Violence Victims
I attended a meeting of the New York Women’s Agenda Domestic Violence Committee (which I co-chair) last night and we had a special presentation about how to use social media for job searches for domestic violence survivors. Important stuff. But safety precautions must be taken. Going to post more on this, but take a look at the guidelines below per the NYS Coalition Against Domestic Violence:
It is important to remember that computer technology can put your privacy and safety at risk. Computer hard drives are capable of recording every action taken on the computer and Internet, and it is virtually impossible to completely erase these “foot prints”. Even if your abuser is not an expert at computers, he may be able to trace what you have done on the computer or can easily find someone who can. If you think you may be monitored on your home computer, it may be safer for you to stop using that computer. Computers that are located in a public library, community technology center, Internet cafe or at a trusted friend’s house may be safer options if you wish to use e-mail or browse the Internet. Other precautions you can take include the following:
- SUSAN GUEST HOSTS ON WBAI 99.5FM: Financial Literacy for Domestic Violence Survivors
Financial Literacy for Domestic Violence Survivors Radio Show
Hosted by Susan Bartelstone, Crime Prevention Specialist
Air Date: March 9, 2012, WBAI 99.5FM, http://wbai.org/
Special Programming for International Working Women’s Day
It can be almost impossible to leave an abusive relationship if you’re jobless, skill-less or lacking the economic resources to survive on one income instead of two–leaving you and your children trapped and financially dependent on an abuser.
On March 9, 2012, I hosted a radio show on WBAI 99.5FM in New York City, on Financial Literacy for Domestic Violence Survivors, as part of a full day of special programming to commemorate International Working Women’s Day.
I hosted this program not only because I’m a crime prevention specialist who has dealt with domestic violence issues for more than 18 years, but also in my capacity as co-chair of the Domestic Violence Committee of the New York Women’s Agenda, a consortium of 100 women’s groups dedicated to fighting for women’s rights regarding equal pay, domestic violence and economic empowerment. Check us out at http://www.NYWA.org.
MY first guest was Denise Allen. Twenty years ago, she was the woman you read about in the newspapers: a wife and mother of two, abused and beaten for 10 years of marriage, who finally kicked out her husband and was left with pretty much nothing; not knowing where her next meal was coming from or how she was going to take care of her family. Today, she’s president of her own company, Allen Tax Services and she’s a Domestic Violence activist who works with organizations servicing survivors, helping them with tax preparation and economic survival strategies.
Next I spoke with Adria Schmidt, who runs the financial literacy courses for the Violence Intervention Program (VIP) in their Casa Sandra housing units and Yvette Perez who supervises was financial literacy courses in their shelter. The Violence Intervention Program is the only program in NYC that services Spanish-speaking and immigrant survivors (documented or undocumented) exclusively.
After the show, as Denise Allen and I were leaving the control booth, someone called in for one of the hotline numbers I gave out during the broadcast. It was an amazing moment for us because we knew someone was listening and taking our message to heart.
- DENISE ALLEN, ALLEN TAX SERVICES, tax preparation and speaker on economic survival strategies: email@example.com
- NEW YORK WOMEN’S AGENDA FINANCIAL LITERACY GUIDE: free download, updated annually, that lists internet resources, publications and financial literacy courses and programs held in all five boroughs of NYC: http://www.nywa.org
- WI$E (WORKING IN SUPPORT OF EDUCATION) provides local and national financial literacy education programs to youth and domestic violence victims: 212-421-2700 ♦ www.wise-ny.org
- BARRIER FREE LIVING: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOTLINE and GENERAL HELPLINE FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES: 212-677-6668 ♦ www.bflnyc.org
- NY ASIAN WOMEN’S CENTER, MULTILINGUAL HOTLINE FOR ASIAN WOMEN: www.nyawc.org ♦ 888-888-7702
- VIOLENCE INTERVENTION PROGRAM, HOTLINE FOR SPANISH-SPEAKING/IMMIGRANTS (documented or undocumented): 800-644-5880 ♦ www.vipmujeres.org
- NYC DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOTLINE, staffed by SAFE HORIZON: 800-621-4673 ♦ www.safehorizon.org
- NYC OFFICE OF FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT provides an extensive array of free or low cost programs to help people obtain financial independence: http://www.nyc.gov/html/ofe/html/home/home.shtml
- 10 Things Men Can Do to Stop Men’s Violence Against Women
From a great organization called A Call to Men:
10 Things Men Can Do To End Men’s Violence Against Women
1. Acknowledge and understand how sexism, male dominance and male privilege lay the foundation for all forms of violence against women.
2. Examine and challenge our individual sexism and the role that we play in supporting men who are abusive.
3. Recognize and stop colluding with other men by getting out of our socially defined roles, and take a stance to end violence against women.
4. Remember that our silence is affirming. When we choose not to speak out against men’s violence, we are supporting it.
5. Educate and re-educate our sons and other young men about our responsibility in ending men’s violence against women.
6.”Break out of the man box”- Challenge traditional images of manhood that stop us from actively taking a stand to end violence against women.
7. Accept and own our responsibility that violence against women will not end until men become part of the solution to end it. We must take an active role in creating a cultural and social shift that no longer tolerates violence against women.
8. Stop supporting the notion that men’s violence against women is due to mental illness, lack of anger management skills, chemical dependency, stress, etc… Violence against women is rooted in the historic oppression of women and the outgrowth of the socialization of men.
9. Take responsibility for creating appropriate and effective ways to develop systems to educate and hold men accountable.
10. Create systems of accountability to women in your community. Violence against women will end only when we take direction from those who understand it most, women.
Copyright © 2004, ACT Men Inc. All rights
A CALL TO MEN is proud to be a project of Tides Center http://www.tidescenter.org