Friday, August 26, 2005

CAEPV Announces UK Sister Alliance Partnership

We are very pleased to announce our new partnership with its Sister Alliance in the United Kingdom through the Home Office Domestic Violence Team. The Sister Alliance is named the Corporate Alliance Against Domestic Violence UK and participating companies include The Body Shop International, Vodaphone, AOL/Time Warner, KPMG, the BBC, and the National Health Service (NHS) -- the largest employer in Europe with over 1.3 million employees. The Alliance Chair is Baroness Scotland QC, who is also Chair for the Inter-Ministerial Group on Domestic Violence.

The Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence is a leading force in the fight against intimate partner violence and its effects on the workplace. It is the only national organization of its kind founded by business leaders and focused on the workplace. Since 1995, the Alliance has brought together dozens of progressive companies who exchange information, collaborate on projects, and use their influence to instigate change. The Alliance offers extensive research, policy knowledge and issue expertise to the business community, including training, program guidance, and crisis consultation – with programs designed to make the workplace safe and to prevent intimate partner violence from impacting the workplace.

CAEPV has member and associate organizations reaching over one million employees across the United States. Corporate members include Altria Group, Inc., American Express, ADM, Avon Products, Inc., Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, Blue Shield of California Foundation, CIGNA, COUNTRY Insurance & Financial Services, Eastman Kodak, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Legal Momentum, Lifetime Television, Liz Claiborne Inc., Mary Kay Inc., Northern Trust, RAND, State Farm Insurance Companies, Verizon Communications, Verizon Wireless, and The Wireless Foundation.

Internationally, the Corporate Alliance Against Domestic Violence UK joins the United Nations Population Fund/Turkey and the Office of the Status of Women, Commonwealth of Australia as CAEPV member organizations.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

CAEPV To Field First National Survey Regarding Impact of DV On Workplace

Starting last night, we are fielding the first ever national telephone survey asking employed adults about their experiences and attitudes regarding domestic violence as a workplace issue. There have been small studies done, and some studies done with groups of employees whose companies are participating in domestic violence workplace training programs -- but no one has ever asked people across the US before if they have noticed this at work before, and how it has impacted them.

We are not sure what sort of results to expect (since this kind of survey has never been done before) but we look forward to learning what people across the US have to tell us. This is a benchmarking survey, and we intend to repeat it in coming years to measure changes as we hope that more awareness is raised about the issue, and that more companies have programs and resources in place to assist employees who need help.

We thank Park National Bank for joining on as the most recent sponsor of this survey. Park National Bank joins the following companies and organizations sponsoring this benchmarking survey:
Verizon Wireless -- Lead Sponsor
Blue Shield of California Foundation
State Farm Insurance Company
Liz Claiborne Inc.
Mary Kay Inc.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

October 11, 2005 Set for "It's Time To Talk Day"

Liz Claiborne Inc, Marie Claire, and Verizon Wireless will partner nationally to sponsor the second annual "It's Time to Talk Day" on Tuesday, October 11, 2005.

The idea behind "It's Time to Talk Day" is simple -- it is designed to be a day on which Americans nationwide will be urged to talk about domestic violence -- in classrooms, offices, homes, coffeehouses. . . anywhere people gather.

To see examples of what was done in 2004, check out the "It's Time To Talk Day" page on the CAEPV web site to see what CAEPV members did together in Central Illinois.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Oregon Lawmakers Ensure Help For Domestic Violence Victims A Phone Call Away

Eugene, Oregon --Victims of domestic violence no longer have to worry about having their phone service cut off because of overdue bills. Starting September 1st, a new law requires phone companies to put victims of domestic violence on payment plans rather discontinue service, giving the abused a vital safety link.

To qualify for a payment plan, victims must have a court-issued protective order and make regular payments. Phone companies are not required to extend service to those who won't pay at all. The program provides only local service. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Vicki Walker, D-Eugene, passed both chambers by a wide margin.

Approval brought a feeling of relief to Cheryl O'Neill, the executive director of Womenspace, a Eugene-based shelter and support service for domestic violence victims. O'Neill began pushing for the law six years ago when she worked at the Domestic Violence Clinic of Lane County Legal Aid, helping clients go to court for protective orders to keep abusive ex-partners at bay.
One of O'Neill's clients had recently moved out of an abusive relationship and obtained a restraining order, but could not afford phone service. "Both she and I had contacted the phone company, asking them to let her make payments on the overdue bill so that she would have the safety line of a phone," O'Neill said. "At the phone company I was told it was illegal for them to make such an agreement."

O'Neill said people leaving abusive relationships often have financial problems — such as no credit history, too little income and overdue phone bills — that prevent them from getting phone service.

Yet, O'Neill says, they need phone service to call police, to contact friends and other supporters, to look for housing and jobs, to reach out for help from 24-hour crisis lines, to check on children at school, to call their lawyers.

O'Neill's client could not summon help when her abusive ex-partner showed up at her home. He raped her, and then committed suicide in front of her. "I've been carrying that woman around with me all these years. You know that sinking feeling? You reach out to catch something that's falling and you miss," she said. "I felt I still had a duty to her." (Source: Associated Press)