Dec 122014
 

BJUSignWe wanted to share the Final Report done by Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (G.R.A.C.E.) on BJU regarding any and all complaints made to representatives of Bob Jones University or Bob Jones Academy related to sexual abuse.

 

GRACE Final Report

 

Here is what our Executive Director, Sara Barber, initially had to say about the report “We hope that Bob Jones University is able to transform itself from an institution that has lost the trust of members of the community into one that engages in genuine and substantive change. The final report of the GRACE investigation points towards hopeful signs that BJU has started to take the necessary steps to better understand and prevent sexual assault while also providing focused services to survivors.”

 

Stay tuned for SCCADVASA’s officials response to the report.

 

Bob_Jones_University,_Front_Campus_Fountain

 Posted by on December 12, 2014 Blog Comments Off
Dec 022014
 

Dear Friends,

 2014 has been a momentous year for SCCADVASA – a year of strengthening our foundation and re/defining who we are as a coalition. In January, the Board of Directors which had always been comprised completely of member program representatives, welcomed community members from across the state into its ranks. The five new community-based board members, Pam Belkevitz, Hope Blakely, Kelli Scurry, Eddie Weinberg and Valerie Williams worked alongside member program representatives Ginny Waller, Becky Callaham, Lynn Hawkins, Kay Mixon and Tracy Bowie and Interim Executive Director Colleen Campbell Bozard to ensure continued forward momentum that honored SCCADVASA’s past while preparing the organization for further transition.

 The Board focused on four primary goals in 2014, including continuing the search for a new Executive Director. Colleen Campbell Bozard worked closely with Ginny Waller and the Executive Transition Committee, which was made up of board members and other community leaders, to recruit and interview candidates. After an exhaustive search, the Committee was pleased to announce the appointment of Sara Barber to the Executive Director position at SCCADVASA’s annual meeting in May.

 Under the leadership of Ginny Waller, Becky Callaham, Sharon Wilkinson and Rebecca Williams-Agee, SCCADVASA’s Legislative Committee grew in leaps and bounds. After many years of being spread too thinly, the committee focused on drawing in individuals and organizations outside of SCCADVASA’s traditional partnerships to help build consensus on legislation. The committee also renewed its commitment to evaluating the various concerns of SCCADVASA’s membership and the community in regards to sexual assault and domestic violence and to measuring its efficacy. In June, H. 3361 a bill to allow for the inclusion of pets in orders of protection that the committee supported was signed into law. The committee is currently focusing its efforts on addressing victim confidentiality and domestic violence homicide reduction. Both Sara Barber and Becky Callaham have provided testimony to the CDV Reform Committee.

 Two ad-hoc committees were formed to address additional goals around increasing awareness of SCCADVASA and membership benefits and responsibilities. The ad-hoc Public Relations Committee, led by Pam Belkavitz, began its work by developing an elevator speech for board members to ensure consistency when discussing the organization. Over the summer, the ad-hoc Membership Committee led by Tracy Bowie and Amanda Wozniak-Woodruff, began the large task of reviewing and revising membership levels and benefits to not only help retain current members, but to also help attract new members.

 I want to thank Lynn Hawkins, Kay Mixon, Ginny Waller, Becky Callaham and Tracy Bowie, all of whom will be transitioning off the board, for their leadership and service this year. When SCCADVASA’s board convenes in January 2015, it will be comprised of ten community members and four member program representatives. Under the leadership of the board and executive director and with the support of its member programs in 2015, SCCADVASA is truly poised to unite allies and unify voices across the state to demand an end to sexual assault and domestic violence.

Sincerely,

Kristin Dubrowski

2014 Board Chair

 Posted by on December 2, 2014 Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault Comments Off
Nov 032014
 

During Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, SCCADVASA’s member agencies joined with the greater South Carolina community to honor the strength and courage displayed by survivors, and raise awareness of the issue at events held throughout the state. The Silent Witness Ceremony, held annually by the Attorney General’s Office provided a moment to pause and reflect while honoring the memory of those who lost their lives to domestic violence in 2013. As we look forward, efforts to engage the community and our state’s leaders in pursuing meaningful positive change will remain central to our mission.

 

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 Posted by on November 3, 2014 Blog Comments Off
Oct 022014
 

Governor Haley Signs Domestic Violence Awareness Month Proclamation

 

2014 Domestic Violence Proclamation

Sep 252014
 

IMAG0591The 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.

 Posted by on September 25, 2014 Blog, Domestic Violence Comments Off
Sep 232014
 

south_carolina_statehouse2On 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:

Testimony to the House Criminal Domestic Violence Reform Committee

The panel’s next meeting is scheduled for Oct. 7

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SC House Committee on Criminal Domestic Violence Reform

 

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”

 Posted by on September 23, 2014 Blog, Domestic Violence Comments Off
Sep 092014
 

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.

 Posted by on September 9, 2014 Domestic Violence Comments Off
Aug 252014
 

“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.”

post-and-courier

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)

 

 Posted by on August 25, 2014 Blog Comments Off
Aug 122014
 

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/.

 Posted by on August 12, 2014 Blog Comments Off
Aug 062014
 

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.

Download a copy of Elvin Daniel’s full testimony here

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.

Download a copy of Chris Schmaling’s full testimony here

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.

 

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 Posted by on August 6, 2014 Blog Comments Off