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September 28, 2001

 

Dear Friends, 

We head into Domestic Violence Awareness month next week. I am grateful to all of you who are involved with Silent Witness activities around the world. You are honoring the lives of all the Silent Witnesses and letting their voices be heard. We need to speak out against violence this year more than ever. Make an extra effort to go to an event or even to light a candle in the name of healing and peace. If we don't carry out this healing who will and if not now, when? You are angels and this is the time to act. As you read the following Silent Witness stories, re-commit yourself to working in any way you can to heal this country of domestic violence. 


Beverly Lone Eagle, Killed July 27, 1990 
She had previously sought shelter as a battered woman. She was pushed from a car, then struck and killed while walking along the old Bemidji highway. Her husband was charged with second-degree manslaughter in her death. He has previously served a reduced sentence for the awe-murder of his first wife. 


Tameka Hollie Vines, Killed October 10, 1994 
Tameka was nineteen years old and living in Angier. She was five months pregnant. She was shot once in the head in a triple shooting that left her mother and stepfather injured. She and her baby died. Her former boyfriend, who was under a restraining order, was charged with first-degree murder in her death. 



WELCOME NEW EMAIL CORRESPONDENTS: 
Laura Schimmel (Jr. League, Monterey County, CA), Debbie Sanders (Board member, Safehouse, Co-director, SW March, Colorado Springs, CO), Sara Koury (Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH), Ronette Schneider (Jr. League, Erie, PA), Linda Simeon (DV Advocate/Hotline, Safespace, Dade County, FL), Tammy Brown (Prosecutor's Office, Uvalde County, TX, new Silent Witness exhibit). 



STATES/COUNTRIES ON BOARD FOR OCTOBER SW EVENTS: WE HAVE A WAYS TO GO!!! 
Please let us know if you are scheduling events as soon as possible and get us the details later. There are 34 states/countries on board: Countries: Canada, Cayman Islands, Hungary, United States. States: Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New 
Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wyoming. 

I would love to hear from people in the states that are usually active and have not notified us yet about their activities: Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin. Thanks for all your great work. Together we can heal this nation. 



NEWS FROM THE STATES/COUNTRIES: 

Alaska 
Marcia Mckenzie updates us from Alaska: 

As of this past Friday, the Anchorage shelter is working on setting up an event with the Witnesses during the last week of October, and they will go to Ketchikan during October also. 

*Yes, this is long distance travel for the Alaska Silent Witnesses. They are seasoned travelers by now. 



California: 
This note from Laura Schimmel, Jr. League of Monterey: So far this fall, we have planned for our Silent Witnesses: September 25, a candlelight vigil for the Parents of Murdered Children; 
September 20, Mujeres Leadership coalition's annual candlelight vigil; October 5, Domestic Violence Coordination Council Annual Conference; October 15, YWCA Community forum @ city hall; October 16, YWCA Youth film @ Boy's & Girl's club; October 20, YWCA violence and the Media @ Monterey Peninsula College There are due to be a few more events added to the calendar as they near. 

*Thanks for this great update. There is a lot going on in Monterey County. And Laura, welcome to the coordinating position with the Witnesses. 

And Tina Campbell of Sacramento tells us that the University of California, Davis has displayed the Silent Witness exhibit twice. Thanks for that news. 



Colorado: 
This note from Debbie Sanders, a strong SW supporter in Colorado Springs: 

I AM A NEW CORRESPONDENT TO YOUR GROUP FROM COLORADO SPRINGS. WE ARE HAVING  A SILENT WITNESS WALK ON OCTOBER 14TH, HERE IN COLORADO SPRINGS,COLORADO. IT'S OUR 4 TH ANNUAL, AND WE ARE VERY PROUD OF THIS! OUR SPONSORING AGENCY IS T.E.S.S.A, FORMERLY THE CENTER FOR PREVENTION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE.. I AM A BOARD MEMBER AND VOLUNTEER AT OUR SAFEHOUSE,AND 2 YEAR CO-CHAIR OF OUR SW WALK.. THANKS FOR ALL YOU ARE DOING WITH THIS CORRESPONDENCE VIA E-MAIL ,ITS A GREAT WAY TO STAY INFORMED. 

A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO I PETITIONED SENATOR BEN NIGHTHORSE CAMPBELL TO 
SPONSOR A BILL TO INTRODUCE A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE FUNDRAISING POSTAL STAMP---I AM PLEASED TO SAY IT WILL BE VOTED ON IN OCTOBER OF THIS YEAR . IF SUCCESSFUL, AS THE BREAST CANCER RESEARCH FUNDRAISER STAMP WAS, IT WILL HAVE MONIES DISTRIBUTED BY DEPT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TO OVER 2000 SHELTERS FOR VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VILOLENCE. I WILL LET YOU KNOW IF SUPPORT WOULD HELP, WITH E-MAIL SUPPORT 

*This is wonderful. And to think of a stamp that we could buy to support DV. 
What a great idea. 



Delaware: 
Here's another idea for your October event. It comes to us from Heidi Palalay in Delaware: 

My name is Heidi Palalay and I am part of the pop/folk acoustic duo Relative Sight. We are currently working with the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence to distribute our new single "Break the Cycle" to all state coalitions in hope that the song can serve as a public information tool for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We will also be sending you a copy. Hopefully, you will be able to use it as a public information tool as well. If you'd like to hear a sample of the song, please go to our website at www.relativesight.com

*I hope many of you can take advantage of this music. Go to their web site 
and hear it and then order from there. 




Idaho: 
Celia Heady reports that they have four sets of Witnesses - Displays will be in Caldwell, Post Falls, Valley County, Idaho Falls and Blackfoot. The Witnesses will also appear in Boise on October 17-18. In the year 2000, there were 5 adult female homicides. 

*Thanks for this update, Celia. Hearing these summaries each year is like hearing from old friends. 


Maryland: 
This utterly amazing story from Dorothy Lemmey, who moved from Ohio to Maryland and it now making wonderful things happen there: Our church and board approved the proposal to produce the silent witnesses of Harford County. I applied for a $1100 community grant to sponsor production of the silent witnesses but was denied. A radio manager contacted me for an interview about our project. Our appointment was for 10:30a September 11, 2001. We were driving and I was reading out loud points I wanted to make and the radio (NPR) was turned down low. About 9:40a I sensed the urgency of the muffled voice on the radio and stopped reading out loud. We turned it up and first heard that a plane ran into the World Trade Center and it was on fire, then a second plane hit tower #2. Then a large plane also had struck the Pentagon. We looked at each other in disbelief. I was reminded of Orson Wells  radio transmission of the  War of the Worlds.  What is happening? 

When we arrived at the building that housed the radio station we walked by about 10 people outside smoking and talking, some on cell phone. The looks on their faces were disbelief. We made some eye contact but kept walking. I was unsure what to say, words seemed useless. We walked into suite 201, which housed 2 radio stations. The first thing I noticed was the radio was blaring the blow-by-blow descriptions of the three planes hitting in NYC and Washington, you could hear the shouting and mayhem on the scene. There were women and men glued to something they were staring at on the wall enclosed behind glass doors. There were 2 black women hugging in an office. The words fail me to describe the tension in the office. There was a sense of panic; radio descriptions of the terror, people rapidly walking from room to room. The tall , well-dressed, kindly receptionist could not focus on our question about the interview. She stared at us unsure what to say and stated it as such. Then Joy Finkelstein arrived with a shocked image on her face. Her Government cell phone had a digital message emergency on the screen; she said, "We all should go home to be with family, this is just mute right now."So over the next 24 hours I questioned should I keep pursuing this? It seems unimportant now in light of such national disaster and fear. Wednesday I taught nursing students and on the way home I received a call from one of the church members. She had taken my proposal to the Harford County Community College President and it was approved, they would give us $1000. She also told me a church member who was an artist would help me produce a child and a male figure. After I hung up from talking to her I believed this was a message to us that YES this is important and we must do it. Because I believe that family violence and the need for power and control is the core of all the violence we see in the world and I have to do my small part. And each person in the church is doing his or hers. I see this as our small part to halt violence on earth. 

Our Witnesses will appear October 1st through October 31. Ten life size figures painted red on one side and black on the other will be standing in front of Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Harford County (UUFHC). A bronze shield displayed on their chest will have their name, birth and death date as well as circumstances surrounding their death. Harford County Sheriffs department supplied the names of the Harford County domestic homicide victims from 1993 to 2001. There will be there will be 7 female figures, 1 male, and one-child figures and several anonymous figures produced. 

*I wanted you to read this in its entirety because it is so moving I weep reading it. Dorothy, what a difference you are making. And of course, they were meant to be. 



Minnesota: 
Susan Peterson from Northfield writes about this exciting new venture 
between countries: 

I am a member of a Minnesota/Costa Rica Domestic Abuse task force. We have been working on a mission to bring Supreme Court Justices and Judges from family courts in Costa Rica to Minnesota. The purpose of this mission is for the judges from Costa Rica to meet in Minnesota with Victim and Family Services agencies, law enforcement, courts, corrections and all aspects of services for victims of domestic abuse, violence against women and children, child sexual exploitation, child prostitution and related areas. We want to share information that we have, network together to solve similar gaps in services, and build bridges between diverse cultures. Minnesota was chosen primarily because of our ties to Costa Rica that have been in place for years, and also because of Casa De Esperanza, an agency in St. Paul which provides support, advocacy and services to primarily Latina women. Housing will take place in Northfield, and sessions will be in Ramsey County, Hennepin County,and Rice County. The mission was scheduled to commence last week, but of course because of the USA coming under attack, the mission had to be postponed. 

*Susan, this is great news. Please keep up posted on the visit and on the results. thanks. 



Nevada: 
Here is a summary of the SW activities in Nevada for October: Their exhibit will be at several venues, and it will be split up with a few figures in the various places. There will be some at Incline Village and some in Douglas County; one or two at the Carson City Courthouse for the entire month of October. 

*Thanks for this report. We've love to know more and find out how the Silent Witnesses affect people. 




New Jersey: 
Here is a press release from Middlesex County, NJ that you might want to keep track of for your own use. Thanks for Yvonne Hook for sending it along: 

"THE SIlENT WITNESS FIFTH ANNUAL EXHIBIT" 
Although most people believe, "It can't happen to me," in New Jersey alone last year there were 77,680 domestic violence offenses reported of which 39 were murders. An educated and informed public is the best defense against violence, therefore, the Middlesex County Silent Witness Committee is presenting the Fifth Annual Silent Witness Exhibit at Rutgers University. 

All who visit the exhibit are profoundly affected. The silhouettes, that commemorate the lives of real people, our friends, neighbors, relatives, who were lost to us through acts of domestic violence, stand in silence. The silence, which we are awed by, we hope will move people to remember the victims with reverence and honor. That their powerful silence will make people more aware of the ultimate outcome of violence and that they will be moved to take some form of action through education, advocacy and legislation to create safety and peace in our world. 

*This is great. We can use this all over the country. Thanks for saving us a lot of work, Yvonne. 




North Carolina: 
Marie French of the Coalition fills us in on NC Silent Witness events: 

NCCADV's event is October 2nd. We will display silent witnesses and artwork at the Legislative Building auditorium from 11am to 3pm. There are 12 other programs planning vigils and other events with the Silent Witnesses across NC. I have attached an invitation to our event. 

*thanks Marie. We have such fond memories of visiting NC the year before the march and having the Governor unveil the Silent Witnesses. It was a momentous occasion. Thanks for all you do there. 



Washington state: 
Yuko Miki at Eastside Domestic Violence Program sent the following: 

List of organizations that are having the Silent Witness Exhibit in Domestic 
Violence Awareness month. 

10/1-10/9 Edmonds Community College (Lynnwood); 10/5-10/12 Evergreen State College (Olympia); 10/15-10/22 University Place Police (University Place) 10/16-10/18; Overlake Hospital (Bellevue) 10/23-10/31 YWCA Tacoma-Pierce (Tacoma); 10/23-10/31 McChord Family Advocacy Program (McChord AFB) All of the agencies are sharing the exhibits. I have received high volume of request for this month, and unfortunately, we had to turn away some of the requests because there was no availability. Some of them changed it to either September or November. 

*Well, it sounds like we need multiple exhibits in Washington. Does anyone know someone who would like to start another SW exhibit in Washington??? Great work, Yuko. thanks a lot. 




Wyoming: 
These notes on Wyoming from Sharon Montignino: 

Silent March Location and Program, Gillette Wyoming. Law enforcement to escort the march. Dave McElhiney, Wyoming Pipes and Drums, to lead the procession. Hearse will lead the procession. Purple ribbon glass chalk for vehicles driving the route. Benjamin Martinez, ESL, starting a new church in Gillette will give a Hispanic blessing. T-shirts-Wrote a Verizon Wireless grant to get 200-250 National Silent Witness t-shirts and other gifts. Photographer for all day. 

*Sounds like another rousing day in Wyoming. Thanks for this update. We hope this goes well and that it is as well attended as usual. It is a powerful ceremony. 



Singapore: 
We got this special note from one of our colleagues on the other side of the world. We are a smaller world than we think. 

Dear Janet 
I want to convey to you and Lois and all my American friends my deepest sympathies on the tragic and shocking events of 11 Sep. We at Aware grieve with you and all the kind and generous American friends who have supported us over the years. The world has suddenly become a much more dangerous place. While voices will cry out for revenge, we hope that cool and steady hearts will prevail. Yours very sincerely, Hedwig Anuar, Aware 

*Thank you Hedwig. This note really means a lot to us. And after all, we are all in this together. 




NEWS FROM WORLDWIDE HEADQUARTERS: 


Self Mastery Workshop Training: Rose Mary Boerboom is holding the Minnesota training today and we are expecting great things from this day. Our thanks to the accounting firm of Lurie Besikof Lapidus and Company for providing their training room and all the set up expenses for us. Kathy Hogan has been especially helpful to us throughout this planning. We are very grateful for this generous contribution. 


The Empower Programıs Evaluation 2000-2001 Introduction 

This report examines the effectiveness of the Empower Programıs Owning Up curricula, a school-based program that addresses how gender socialization can lead young people to experience violence as a perpetrator, witness, or bystander. The findings reported here are based on two samples: A sample of 180 female students ages 14 to 19, and a sample of 222 male students, ages 14 to 19. The survey and research was designed and conducted with the 
guidance of Mt. Sinai Adolescent Hospital including Dr. Betty Hamburg and Morton Slater, Ph.D.; Rutgers Universityıs Ph.D. candidate Caroline Heldman; and the Empower Program's staff and board over the 2000-2001 school year. After the program: … Female students acceptance of violence declined significantly after completing the program. Girls in the program were significantly less likely in the post-survey to agree with the statement It's okay for me to hit someone to get them to do what I want² than in the pre-survey.  Post-program, both female and male students were significantly more likely to agree with the statement, "When I am confronted with a problem, I can usually think of a solution." 

Perhaps the evaluationıs most significant finding is the dramatic improvement in the studentsı conflict resolution style. … Verbal aggression dropped significantly from pre-to post-survey among female and male students. This indicates that students were less likely to 
respond with a verbal counterattack in a situation of conflict after completing the program. Physical aggression dropped significantly for female and male students from pre- to post-survey, indicating that students were less likely to respond with a physical counterattack in a situation of conflict after completion of the program. 

To find a full evaluation report go to the Empower web site at 
www.empowerprogram.org 



I leave you today with two quotes, one from Dorothy Lemmey who sent us the wonderful story of the new Maryland Silent Witness exhibit and the other from Eve Hook who coordinates Silent Witness in Middlesex county, NJ: 

"The ruin of a nation begins in the homes of its people." Ghana Proverb. 

"It's really a wonder that I haven't dropped all my ideals, because they seem so absurd and impossible to carry out. Yet I keep them, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can't build my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery and death. 

I see the world gradually turned into wilderness. I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too. I can feel the suffering of millions and yet, when I look up to the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again. 

In the meantime, I must uphold my ideas, for perhaps the time will come when I shall be able to carry them out. 

~~~Anne Frank~~~ 


Cheers, 

Janet 
jhagberg@mn.rr.com 

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