Governor Haley Signs Domestic Violence Awareness Month Proclamation
The Columbia Museum of Art and SCCADVASA teamed up to present ¡Fuerza! This exhibition is located in the Community Gallery and confronts Domestic Violence through art. The exhibit opened on September 23rd and will remain open until November 30th, 2014.
The artwork in ¡Fuerza! is based on a short story by Robert Chambers, and includes a narrative set of 12 graphic novel-style panels by local Hispanic artists. SCCADVASA created brochures specifically for this event, which are stationed near the artwork for those that may need support and advocacy-based services.
The artwork is incredibly powerful and poignant. We would like to invite all of our community allies to support this event and the talented artists, all of whom recognize domestic violence as a serious political-social issue and used their talents to express a taboo matter through art.
On September 17th the first hearing of the Criminal Domestic Violence Reform Committee met. The panel was appointed in the wake of The Post and Courier’s multi-part series titled “Till death do us part,” about South Carolina’s staggering death toll from domestic violence. Rep. Shannon Erickson chairs the 10-member committee made up of Reps. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, MaryGail Douglas, Ralph Kennedy, Deborah Long, Peter McCoy Jr., Robert Ridgeway III, Eddie Tallon, Sr., Anne Thayer, and David Weeks.
The committee heard from experts and professionals from a diversity of backgrounds. Each person, in some capacity, has a connection to the process in which a victim and perpetrator may go through during a criminal domestic violence incident. Some of the speakers included Seventh Circuit Solicitor Barry Barnette, Police Academy instructor Brian Bennet, Chief Judge for the City of Columbia Dana Turner and the executive director of Safe Harbor, Becky Callaham.
SCCADVASA’s Executive Director, Sara Barber, gave her testimony and fielded questions from the committee as well. “Domestic violence is a complex issue without a single easy solution.” Sara stated to the committee. Offender accountability, closing funding gaps and increased enforcement of current gun restrictions were a few of Sara’s proposed solutions. You can read Sara’s entire testimony here:
The panel’s next meeting is scheduled for Oct. 7
You can view the entire hearing on the SC Legislative website. The video is filed under “Wednesday, September 17, 2014 9:30 am, Criminal Domestic Violence Reform Committee”
In light of recent news regarding professional football athletes, we want to say thank you to some of the biggest names in South Carolina football.
This is a PSA from 2011 that coaches Spurrier, Swinney and Pough speak out against domestic violence.
This is Coach Spurrier’s most recent comments on domestic violence during a press conference.
This is Coach Swinney sharing his personal experience with domestic violence.
Thanks to Coach Spurrier and Swinney for their continued focus on holding perpetrators of domestic violence accountable for their violence. We appreciate their challenge to others to do the same.
Being in a relationship with someone shouldn’t make you question your self-worth or your safety. If your partner is emotionally, mentally, or physically abusive—it is not your fault. If you recognize friends using unhealthy relationship behaviors, say something. If you think you or your friend is in an abusive relationship, contact these national hotlines; for domestic abuse call 1.800.799.7233, for sexual assault call 1.800.656.4673.
“More than 300 women were shot, stabbed, strangled, beaten, bludgeoned or burned to death over the past decade by men in South Carolina, dying at a rate of one every 12 days while the state does little to stem the carnage from domestic abuse.”
The Post and Courier decided to write about a cultural private matter, the happenings between a married couple in their home.
We, at SCCADVASA, want to commend the Post and Courier and their Project Team for creating an emotional and accurate series on domestic abuse homicides. The statistics continue to place South Carolina in the top ten states that nationally place for the rate of women killed by men. The Post and Courier uses a multimedia approach to bring into light the violence against women in the state. Reaching out of to victims, counselors, police, prosecutors and judges to create a piece that speaks from the cycle of abuse and violence to the ending of life for some victims.
The Post and Courier printed each story over 5 days, from Wednesday through Sunday, but the whole package is available on their website.
We recommend that every South Carolinian read/see this eye opening piece of work.
Please contact your local program, if you or someone you know who needs resources. Or you can contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1.800.799.SAFE (7233)/ National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1.800.656.HOPE (4673)
The University of South Carolina (USC) Student Health Services is hiring for the position of: Associate Director, Sexual Assault & Relationship Violence Prevention
In the department: Student Health Services
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
The Associate Director, Sexual Assault & Relationship Violence Prevention is responsible for the planning, organizing and implementation of comprehensive sexual assault, advocacy, violence prevention programs and services for the university community, including strategic planning, budgeting, research and grant writing. Organize and build capacity of community-based violence prevention efforts to understand and prevent sexual assault and interpersonal violence. Supports and incorporates the Healthy Carolina initiative in all programs, activities and marketing strategies. Ensures that programs and services meet or exceed standards and guidelines established through Healthy Campus 2020, Title IX and the Clery Act. Utilizes Healthy Campus 2020 objectives and NCHA data to inform the strategic plan. For additional information, copy and paste the following link into your browser: uscjobs.sc.edu/applicants/Central?quickFind=74549 (Requisition number 007867).
The University of South Carolina (USC) Student Health Services embraces a holistic and collaborative approach to healthcare by offering primary care, preventive programs, wellness education, violence prevention, and mental health and counseling services to our campus community. Our mission is to enhance the educational experience by modifying or removing health-related barriers to learning, promoting optimal wellness and enabling individuals to make informed health decisions. We offer uncomplicated access to quality healthcare provided by compassionate staff dedicated to making healthcare accessible and affordable for students through ethically sound practice, confidentiality and integrity. Our accreditation through the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) demonstrates our commitment to quality of care and service delivery. Student Health Services’ continued expansion of services and programs will soon be supported through the construction of a 100,000 square foot, state-of-the-art facility that will bring our five service areas into one centralized location, further supporting our mission of providing holistic healthcare.
To learn more about University of South Carolina Student Health Services, visit http://www.sa.sc.edu/shs/.
The Senate Judiciary Committee last week held its first-ever hearing on the ties between gun policy and domestic violence, deemed an important step in efforts to protect women.
Members of a witness panel discussed possible measures that would close the loopholes in current federal law, including the use of temporary restraining orders to prevent convicted stalkers and perpetrators of domestic violence from purchasing firearms. They mentioned possible next steps in passing additional legislation in the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to protect women from gun violence. A new bill focused on the issue was proposed by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota.
The panel included Dr. Jacquelyn Campbell, Professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing; Dr. Joyce Lee Malcolm, Patrick Henry Professor of Constitutional Law and the Second Amendment at George Mason University School of Law; Christopher Schmaling, Sheriff of Racine County, Wisconsin; Hon. Seamus McCaffery, Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania and Elvin Daniel, from McHenry, Illinois
On October, 12, 2012, Elvin Daniel received a call no one should have to receive. His sister, Zina had been shot and killed by her abusive ex-husband while she was at work. Two other women were also murdered, and four more were injured in this violent incident. Although federal law prohibited Zina’s husband from legally purchasing a gun, he found an unlicensed seller online, and for $500 was able to buy the handgun he used to kill three people.
Sheriff Christopher Schmaling of Racine, WI has spent 19 years in law enforcement. He speaks of experiences of working domestic violence incidents that have opened his eyes to the reality of the role gun violence plays in abusive relationships and the “heightened risk” such calls pose to his officers.
On July 30, Elvin and Sheriff Schmaling, who both identify themselves as conservative Republicans and strong supporters of the Second Amendment, testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of S.1290 which would close loopholes in current federal laws. Their passionate and personal testimonies, supported by the statistical data provided by Dr. Jacqueline Campbell, eloquently spoke to the need for common sense laws that will provide protection to victims of domestic violence and stalking.
You can watch the full Judiciary Hearing here: VAWA Next Steps: Protecting Women from Gun Violence
America’s porous gun laws put women’s lives at risk. In fact, this country is the most dangerous country in the developed world for women when it comes to gun violence. While federal law prohibits convicted domestic abusers and abusers subject to domestic violence restraining orders from owning guns, gaps in federal law still make it too easy for dangerous abusers to access guns.
Let’s look at the numbers, nationally. Every month, an average of 48 American women are shot to death by a current or former husband or boyfriend. American women are 11 times more likely to be murdered with a gun than women in other developed countries. The presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation makes it five times more likely that the woman will be killed.
Let’s look at the numbers, locally. 61 women were murdered by males in South Carolina in 2011, according to the Violence Policy Center. These numbers make South Carolina 1st in the United States for violence against women. For homicides in which the weapon used could be identified, 57 percent of female victims were shot and killed by guns. For homicides in which the victim to offender relationship could be identified, 93 percent of female victims were murdered by someone they knew.
SCCADVASA’s Executive Director, Sara Barber, and Director of Prevention and Education, Rebecca Williams-Agee represented SCCADVASA and the state of South Carolina at the hearings and visits to various congress member’s offices.
SCCADVASA would like to congratulate Becky Callaham, her staff and Board of Directors on the opening of their third shelter in Oconee County. The Ribbon Cutting celebration, July 8th, was attended by over 400 members of the community including South Carolina Senator Thomas Alexander, the Oconee County Sheriff Mike Crenshaw, and other members of the Oconee Shelter Campaign Committee. The shelter will be the first of its kind in the county and will provide services to all families in Oconee County. In March of 2013 Safe Harbor launched a capital campaign to raise $990,000 to open a 24-hour emergency shelter for victims of domestic violence and their children in Oconee County. With generous donations from within Oconee County and throughout the Upstate of South Carolina, Safe Harbor was able to raise over $1.3 million dollars for the purchase of a house and 3 years of operational expenses.
Attendees at the celebration were welcomed by John Powell who also co-chaired the Oconee Shelter Campaign Committee, followed by various supporters and advocates for Safe Harbor and their efforts to build a shelter in Oconee County. Jim and Elisabeth Gadd, Oconee Shelter Campaign Committee members, shared a story of a young girl who wanted to help so she donated ten dollars from her lemonade stand. The theme of team and community was prevalent in all of the remarks given throughout the celebration. We think this was best expressed in a quote read by Elisabeth Gadd, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” -Margaret Mead
Congratulations to Safe Harbor and congratulations to the people of Oconee County!
You can view the entire event on Safe Harbor’s Youtube page, here.
You can now support SCCADVASA when you are doing your online shopping with AmazonSmile.
Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your purchases to the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support us every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to us at SCCADVASA.
To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.
Please use AmazonSmile in an effort to continue your support of the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.
Don’t forget that you can always directly donate to SCCADVASA here.
Since 1989 Elmire Raven has given unwavering support and advocacy at My Sister’s House in the Tri-County area. Her passion and dedication for the work, that has helped hundreds of families, is inspirational. Her 25 years of service was honored by proclamation of “Elmire Raven Day” by the mayors of Charleston, North Charleston, Mt. Pleasant and Summerville on June 26th. There was also a recognition ceremony in honor of Elmire held by My Sister’s House Inc. There were remarks from numerous friends and colleagues of Elmire including SCCADVASA’s very own Training Coordinator, Donna Thompson. The Mount Moriah Praise & Worship Team performed and a presentation of gifts was made by Melva Zinaich, My Sister’s House Board President.
We admire her dedication to making the state a violence-free South Carolina. She has become an influential non-profit leader, educator, advocate for victim rights, and an ambassador for survivors of domestic violence.
We at SCCADVASA would like to say thank you and congratulations to Elmire!