Tuesday, October 07, 2008

October 15 - A Time to Talk About Domestic Violence in Central Illinois

October 15 has been designated as “It’s Time to Talk Day” throughout Central Illinois. Thanks to our CAEPV members located in this area for their partnership with local agencies and organizations involved in this effort! It is amazing!

Wouldn’t it be great to have a single day where we turn to one another and actually talk about two issues that you may not realize are more common than breast cancer? These issues, by their nature, make people uncomfortable – domestic violence and SEXUAL ASSAULT.

The Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence, in partnership with 30 other local organizations and Liz Claiborne Inc., as designated October 15, 2008, as “It’s Time to Talk Day” in Central Illinois, hoping to raise awareness about domestic violence and sexual assault and get people talking about these pervasive social issues.

This year’s theme for “It’s Time to Talk Day” is Once You Phone, You’re Not Alone—encouraging individuals and families impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault to pick up the phone and reach out for assistance. Participating community organizations hope to educate the community on local resources available for victims, survivors and their families while also removing questions about what happens after a call to 911, a crisis hotline or a report to the hospital following abuse.

Among the highlighted events happening throughout “It’s Time to Talk Day” is a free conference featuring experts discussing the impact of domestic violence and sexual assault on individuals at different stages of the lifespan. The conference, “Once You Phone, You’re Not Alone: Reporting and Responding to Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault” will be held at Illinois Wesleyan University’s Memorial Center on October 15 and will introduce attendees to local first responders.

McLean County State’s Attorney Bill Yoder said “This conference along with all of the day’s events are important to help educate the community in understanding the working relationships among emergency responders, the police, prosecutors, and community agencies who work together to assist victims of domestic abuse in our community at the most vulnerable time in their lives. When a victim phones, we all work together to ensure she is not alone.”

The McLean County State’s Attorney’s Office is hosting “People vs. Perry – A Mock Trial” at the McLean County Museum of History in Downtown Bloomington at 6:00PM on October 15. This event, also free and open to the public, illustrates a case of domestic violence and sexual assault. Immediately following the mock trial, Mid Central Community Action’s Countering Domestic Violence Program will hold a candlelight vigil to remember victims and honor survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Verizon will conduct a HopeLine drive for no longer used cell phones during the week of October 13 through October 17, donating an additional $3 for each phone collected during that period. HopeLine is Verizon Wireless’ signature program which turns no longer used wireless phones into support for victims of domestic violence. The collected phones are either refurbished or sold, with the proceeds used to purchase newer wireless phones for domestic violence victims and to support domestic violence shelters and organizations.

“The phones donated to HopeLine do more than just provide emergency communications,” said Kim Wells, Executive Director of the Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence. “The phones give victims the courage to venture beyond the safety of their homes, to go to work, or to go shopping and take their children to school, knowing that, if they are threatened, help is just a phone call away.” Collection bins will be situated at the following locations:

· Heartland Community College
· Illinois State University (Bone Student Center – Leadership & Service Office and University Program Board Office; Minority Student Academic Center; Student Counseling Services; Diversity Advocacy Office)
· Illinois State University Police Department
· Lincoln College - Normal
· Radio Bloomington
· State Farm Insurance Companies (Corporate Headquarters Atrium; Corporate South H-1 Atrium,; Corporate South P-1 Lobby)
· Town of Normal Police Department
· YWCA McLean County
· Illinois Wesleyan University Memorial Center’s Young Main Lounge (on October 15th only)
· McLean County Museum of History (On October 15 only)

Working together, our community can assure that on this day, everyone will be taking a moment to talk about the fact that 25 percent of women and eleven percent of men in the United States will be abused by someone they love in their lifetime.

You can make a difference on October 15! Talk to someone in your life about the signs of healthy and unhealthy relationships. If you are not sure how to get the conversation started please see Liz Claiborne’s educational handbooks, which are designed to give you practical and easy advice on ways to begin to talk about the issue. The handbooks are available at http://www.loveisnotabuse.com/.

For a complete list of events, visit: http://www.caepv.org/about/program_detail.php?refID=39


Anonymous said...

Women are often targeted by vengeful abusers in their place of employment. Today it is especially important to remember that many victims of abuse become stalking victims. Abusers utilizing the internet as well as other public record sources can easily locate a victims place of employment. Thank you to the employers who have vowed to help protect the safety of their employees in the work place!
One person can make a difference!

Kim Wells said...

You are absolutely right Alexis -- thank you for your comments. I truly believe one person can make a difference and I am privileged to work with those "one person at a time" people every day!