This month (January 2009) marks the 6th observance of National Stalking Awareness Month (NSAM) in the United States.
Did you know that each year, more than one million women and nearly 400,000 men in the United States are victims of stalking?
This year the theme is “Stalking: Know It. Name It. Stop It.” It challenges communities (including workplaces) to combat this dangerous crime by learning more about it and taking action.
The Stalking Resource Center and the Office on Violence Against Women has launched the 2009 National Stalking Awareness Month Web site at http://stalkingawarenessmonth.org. The site offers fact sheets, media tools, brochures, posters and artwork, and much more. Check it out!
People do not always realize what "stalking" entails - your "stalker" is usually someone you know, and very often when a person is stalked at work, that indicates a "ramp up" in potential lethality.
Do not "brush off" stalking. Take it seriously. . .whether it is in person or electronic. Keep records. Don't throw things away. Often when I discuss this with people, they have not considered keeping the emails, or voice mails, or notes from the stalker as a record and they should. Do not feel silly about talking with law enforcement about this. . .and if you feel that police are brushing you off, talk to your state's attorney or district attorney. Stalking is serious business, and laws have changed considerably across the US to protect victims.
And if you are an employer, do not take "workplace stalking" lightly. A person being followed and called at work is a person in potential danger. And so is the rest of your workplace. Seek assistance. And http://stalkingawarenessmonth.org is a great place to start.