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Dec. 9, 2005
Dear Friends,

            I have some great news to share with you!! Ann Goldberg with Allstate Foundation is making exhibits for each of the states to go around to meetings and other Allstate Insurance Company events. SHE NEEDS YOUR HELP!! Please write to me with any stories that you have on your silent witnesses. This way she can make them faster! It is a very daunting task to make an exhibit for the whole country especially since she is going to personalize it for the specific state that the exhibit is in! This is an amazing thing and an awesome idea. Pleas help her in anyway you can! What we need the most now is the stories for the Silent Witnesses!! Please send all of your emails to silentwitness2010@gmail.com which is the new official email address.
            This will be my last newsletter until January 13th, 2006. I will continue to answer any questions and help in anyway possible. The internet connection at my home in New York compared to school is significantly slower so it may take me some time to answer any questions. If you email me a phone number I can call you back and help you in anyway possible!!

I would like to welcome our new newsletter subscribers:
Nancy   R in IL
Jennifer            Harvey  in Tahlequah, OK
Gale     Plank in Danbury, CT
Nicole   Beach in Long Prairie, MN
Pat       Konopski in Corning, NY
Julie     Mauney            in Lawrenceville, GA
Catherine Fabrizi                      
Jennifer            Hedlund in Indianapolis, IN
Patricia Mount   in Central City, CO
Simona McNeil  in Killeen, TX
Judith   Gold     in Vernon, IN
Sharon  Wharton                       
Mary     Fulton              
Debra   Forsyth-Smith in Timberlea, NS

I would also like to welcome and thank the people who are going to start new exhibits in their area or bringing an existing exhibit to the area!

Jennifer Hardy Youth Services Coordinator for Shasta County Women's Refuge in North California



New Mexico
North Dakota

We now have an official job description:
The state coordinator keeps track of who in the state have exhibits. Some coordinators have regular correspondence, usually by email, with the groups. They are the contact person for someone who would like to start a new exhibit. They share the shield stories they already have in order to help people not repeat the work that was already done. Some may recruit new SW exhibits as well. Some may coordinate the donating and borrowing of an exhibit for people to use across the state. Some sponsor an event in October for everyone to come to, but others just publicize the events of others. They also keep in touch with us by email or phone to let us know what is happening, keep us up on emerging issues, ask for advice or other things they needed. This may take two to three hours a week in email correspondence. During busier times it may be up to four or five hours.

As you can see we still need many more coordinators! I know that there are people who help and loan exhibits across the state automatically so it would be great to get the information out there for everyone.

I realize that there are people who play this role already. If so then all I need is your contact information so when people in your state need help I can get them to the right place!


What's Up with Sheila's Shawls?
Let's knit Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves!
As of today, Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves has distributed 583
shawls and 52 scarves.

We welcome new state coordinator Trisha Ryan from New York.

The state coordinators have been busy making contacts locally and through freecycle.org to gather donations and supplies to supply materials to the knitters and crocheters that are in various groups.

Minnesota story.

I just have to share the story of the Mass at school on Wednesday, 11/23/05. Wednesday we had Thanksgiving mass with 1000  students and 100 guests. Arch Bishop Harry Flynn was presiding at mass. During the procession of the gifts, the students carried forth, 5 shawls, 31 scarves, 15 hats, a baby blanket, 3 bandages and a pair of mittens. He blessed them and called upon God to bless them. It was truly beautiful and I was so very proud of the students. These were all knit or crocheted by students at Totino-Grace High school. These items were made in the 3 months. Many students learned to knit or crochet just 3 months ago. I am so very excited. They are moving to shawls now. I suggest that they just make a really wide scarf. Scarves are an easy place to start. Shawls take longer. We donated some items to Sheila's shawls, some to the local shelter, and  the bandages go to the leprosy program. I just needed to share  with you the wonders that can happen if you are willing to share a bit of knowledge and talk with others about donations. All my materials have been donated through freecycle or Sheila's  shawls.

Great idea to offer lessons on freecycle. I might do that after the holiday season. I have to see when the second job is over. Everyone is interested in free lessons. Check out the shelter or a  near by church for interest as well.
May there be domestic peace in every home. 
Renee Youngberg
Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves
New York
From Shari Hogan: the Silent Witness events since August
August 14/15 Brockport Arts Festival
Labor Day Weekend High Falls Laser Light Show
September 23 Shatter The Silence Concert All proceeds to ABW
October 1 Susan B. Anthony Park press conference w/ local ABW to announce Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October 20-24 SUNY Brockport College/Womens Center/Take back the night March
November 18th Silent Auction at University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry proceeds to ABW

From the CAPEV update:

Mark your calendars -- and take your mark, get set, go!  The Need for Speed Relay to Speak Out Against Domestic Violence is a new relay event that will take place in Westchester County, New York on June 11, 2006. It is open to runners of every level of expertise, and offers an exciting opportunity to race as a team while raising awareness and funds to help children affected by violence in their homes. Joe Torre, Manager of the New York Yankees, will serve as Honorary Team Captain of the inaugural Need for Speed Relay.
The Need for Speed Relay to Speak Out Against Domestic Violence is a project of the Avon Foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity founded in 1955 to improve the lives of women. Avon philanthropic programs worldwide have raised and awarded more than $450 million for breast cancer and women’s empowerment. In 2004 the Avon Foundation launched the Speak Out Against Domestic Violence initiative to raise funds and awareness for domestic violence education, community outreach, direct service programs and prevention. The Need for Speed Relay is a new program of Speak Out Against Domestic Violence initiative. Funds will be awarded to organizations that provide programs to help children who have been abused or witnessed abuse, or programs that address the cycle of violence that makes these children more likely to be abusers in the future. One organization that will receive the funds is CAEPV Member The Joe Torre Safe At Home Foundation.  The funds will be used to create a “Margaret’s Place” program in Westchester County. Joe Torre knows the fear of children affected by violence in the home. He lived it as a child, fearful of his own father, who abused his mother, Margaret. Joe believes that no child should have to live with that fear. It is in that spirit, and in memory of his mother that the Joe Torre Safe At Home Foundation was established.
“Margaret’s Place” provides middle school and high school students with a designated safe room staffed with a trained counselor to provide students with the opportunity to safely discuss issues of abuse that may be experienced or witnessed at home or being perpetrated through their own behavior. Through interactive classroom workshops, students also learn about the cycle of abuse and how they can take an active role in breaking this cycle by changing a school culture through anti-violence campaigns.
More information will be available in January.  You can visit http://www.avoncompany.com/women/avonfoundation/needforspeed.html for the latest details and to sign up to receive information.
 Nearly a third of U.S. doctors surveyed in a recent poll said they don't keep a record when their patients report domestic violence, and 90 percent don't document domestic violence adequately, new research shows.  Those inadequate doctors' reports also don't record whether the doctors offered support and information about domestic violence to patients who might have needed that type of assistance.
Reporting in the November 20 issue of the journal BMC Family Practice, researchers led by Megan Gerber of Harvard Medical School analyzed doctors' reports on 90 patients, all victims of domestic violence.
In 26 of those 90 cases, the doctor's report did not document that the patient had mentioned an incident of domestic violence, the researchers found. Only 10 percent of the doctors' reports recorded that the physician offered some information to patients about where to get help for domestic violence and assisted patients in developing a list of steps to remove themselves from the situation.  A third of doctors surveyed said they didn't feel confident in counseling patients who reported domestic violence. (Source:  Forbes.com)  

The first-ever World Health Organization (WHO) study on domestic violence reveals that intimate partner violence is the most common form of violence in women’s lives - much more so than assault or rape by strangers or acquaintances. The study reports on the enormous toll physical and sexual violence by husbands and partners has on the health and well-being of women around the world and the extent to which partner violence is still largely hidden.

The study (which found that one in six women are victims of intimate partner violence) is based on interviews with more than 24,000 women from rural and urban areas in 10 countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Ethiopia, Japan, Namibia, Peru, Samoa, Serbia and Montenegro, Thailand, and the United Republic of Tanzania. The study's authors found one-quarter to one-half of all women who had been physically assaulted by their partners said they had suffered physical injuries.  Abused women were twice as likely as non-abused women to have poor health and physical and mental problems such as pain or suicidal thoughts or attempts.  At least 20 percent of women who reported physical violence in the study never told anyone before they were interviewed.  The report recommends changes to attitudes that perpetuate abuse. Recommendations include:

  • Integrating violence prevention into health programs.
  • Training health workers and police to identify and respond.
  • Ensuring schools are safe places.
  • Strengthening support systems for victims.

A new research study examining a seven-year period of 32 domestic violence-related deaths in Hamilton County, Ohio, found that in more than 80 percent of the cases, the victim was either separated or about to terminate the relationship. In 96 percent of the cases, there were so called "predictors of death."  These are some of the key findings in a new research study led by the University of Cincinnati's School of Social Work.

UC School of Social Work Assistant Professor Gary Dick, in partnership with Ann MacDonald, Executive Director of Rape Crisis & Abuse Center and Chair of the Hamilton County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council's Death Review Panel, analyzed the final reports from the panel that were collected from 1997 to 2003. The research found that 91 percent of those who died were female. Sixteen percent of the victims had a protection order in place at the time of their deaths. Children were present in the household in 36 percent of the cases.

Dick says similar studies have been conducted in Chicago and Houston. Early findings from the Cincinnati study were presented at the 10th International Conference on Family Violence in San Diego. Dick says the findings from this study and other U.S. studies have implications for safety planning. The major findings of this study identified the following risk factors (predicators of death). They are:

* Separated - 83 percent
* Substance abuse - 68 percent
* Escalating abuse - 56 percent
* Stalking behaviors - 50 percent
* Criminal history - 46 percent
* Threats to kill - 43 percent
* Prior domestic violence-related charge - 36 percent
* Child abuse - 33 percent
* Threats of suicide - 33 percent
* Perpetrator mental illness - 31 percent
* Perpetrator brought a weapon - 29 percent
* Strangulation - 29 percent
* Threats with weapons - 25 percent
* Property damage - 23 percent
* Violated a protection order - 23 percent
* Previous serious injury - 23 percent
* Sexual assault - 21 percent
* Animal abuse - Eight percent

Dick adds that this collaborative effort will result in helping families recognize the seriousness of domestic violence. In addition, practical applications also include professional training and development of a statewide training assessing risk of death from domestic violence for the Ohio Department of Human Services. "The results of this study have important implications for the safety of victims in our community," Dick says. (For more information contact Dawn Fuller at the University of Cincinnati at dawn.fuller@uc.edu.) 
From Pat Reuss and the National Organization for Women:
Stop Violence Against Women

Take Action on the Violence Against Women Act
Congress went home last week and failed to finalize the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. It will not be easy to convene a conference committee and come to an agreement about what the final VAWA2005 should look like. But it is not impossible. Both the House and the Senate will return for a short time in December and the leadership must hear from us that we expect them to get VAWA's differences worked out and passed!
Thanks to all of you who have signed the VAWA petition already.  We currently have almost 12,000 signatures with names from every state. Good job!
If you haven’t taken the opportunity to add your name, please sign the VAWA petition urging Congressional leaders to pass VAWA NOW! Forward this appeal to your colleagues and coalition partners as well, because we will be delivering the final batch of petitions to Congress the week of December 5 and need as many signatures as possible.
Also, call the offices of the House and Senate leadership with this simple message: Add passing VAWA to your December agenda and get it passed before services are reduced and programs are eliminated. Women, children and families are relying on you.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn), 202-224-3135
House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Ill), 202-225-0600
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev), 202-224-5556
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Cal), 202-225-0100
Send an email to your Senators and Representative asking them to help expedite this process.
Although VAWA's authorization ran out September 30 along with the funding for all government activities and programs, Congress voted to continue funding at last year's levels through December 17th. But without passage of VAWA 2005, no funding stability or cost of living increases are guaranteed and any new programs in the bill will be unable to get off the ground.
On Tuesday afternoon, October 4, the Senate passed its version of VAWA 2005, S. 1197, by a unanimous consent agreement, meaning that all of the Senators had no objections (or had withdrawn their objections) to the bill. A less comprehensive version of VAWA 2005 passed the House of Representatives on September 28 as H.R. 3402, the Department of Justice's yearly authorizing and funding bill
While the House version included reauthorization of crucial VAWA programs, it does not achieve all that is needed. At the last minute just before the vote, the Republican leadership dropped important provisions dealing with immigrants and women of color.
The Senate bill still includes many of these House-dropped provisions, but faced its own trimming as a key program was dropped that would have extended coverage for unemployment insurance to domestic violence survivors who lose their jobs as they hide or flee from violence.
Whenever there are differences between similar bills that are passed in the House and Senate a "conference committee" with representatives from both houses, must meet to work out the differences between the two bills and come up with one final bill before the President can sign it. Because the House bill is part of a larger Department of Justice bill, H.R. 3402, and the Senate bill, S. 1191, is free-standing, this makes holding a conference committee even harder.
Thanks to all of you who sent comments on the Army's proposed Sexual Assault Data Management System
The Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and the Department of the Army received over 6,000 e-mailed comments on their proposal for a new sexual assault data management system that proposed to collect invasive and personal data about sexual assaults in the military.  NOW was joined in this effort by Stop Family Violence, the Miles Foundation, the Feminist Majority and 16 Congressmembers led by Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-NY.  The deadline was the Friday after Thanksgiving and we have yet to hear if they have accepted our pleas to keep this data anonymous.  background
"Battered Women, Abused Children, and Child Custody: A National Crisis III: Unity—and Action!”
   January 6th, 7th, & 8th, 2006     
    Visit www.batteredmotherscustodyconference.org for registration, brochure,  schedule, topics, fees, fee waiver, hotel, and other details.
      The First National Battered Mother's Custody Conference (BMCC), held in January, 2004, brought together experts from across the nation to discuss the serious injustices faced by battered women who seek protection for themselves and their children in this nation’s family court/divorce court system.  Building upon the momentum of that conference, the BMCC II, held in January, 2005, provided a powerful networking opportunity for professionals, domestic violence advocates, organizations, and advocacy groups who are working to expose these problems and develop solutions.  The Third Battered Mothers Custody Conference, scheduled for January, 2006, will provide a venue for the crucial next step of the Protective Parents Movement:  the development of unity among all of those affected by these problems and the sharing of action steps that have been proven effective
Have a great holiday and a Happy New Year!
Cassie Pritchard

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