Tag Archives: Domestic Violence

VA Event

VA event

Reaching out to the Community to provide information on the Victim Services program available to Veterans and their families.

Advertisements
Image

Updated Therapy Groups

therapy groups

 

WPTV_2008

WPTV featured a piece on the Palm Beach Victims’ Coalition’s National Day Of Remembrance 2017:

PALM BEACH SHORES, Fla. – Families and friends of people lost to homicide never forget the tragedy of losing loved ones so senselessly.

On Sunday, the Palm Beach County community came together to remember those victims.

The Palm Beach Victims’ Rights Coalition hosted a ceremony ahead of the National Day of Remembrance on Monday.

The ceremony was held at the Palm Beach Shores Community Center and honored victims of violence.  Families spoke about the grief and their experiences in the wake of tragedy.

“People are affected by this on a daily basis. It’s not a short-term problem — it’s long-term. It’s eye opening for people that haven’t been touched by violence to know that it exists and how these people are affected by it. It affects us all,” said Annette Andre of the Palm Beach County Victims’ Rights Coalition.

Families traveled from other parts of Florida to attend Sunday’s event in Palm Beach County.

 

View the video and article in its entirety here

Image

DV Opening Ceremony

DV opening ceremony

Image

2017 Support Group Schedule

Support Groups

Palm Beach Post

In April, following the Ceremony in the Garden event for Victim Rights Week, the Palm Beach Post featured this article:

Crime victims recall pain, celebrate healing at remembrance

By Mike Stucka – Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Ceremony 4

Posted: 1:44 p.m. Thursday, April 06, 2017


After a childhood of abuse was followed by a rape that battered most of her body, Bridgit Stoffer has accepted she’ll never be the person she was. But she still has hope, the Palm Beach State College art professor said at a Thursday ceremony for crime victims.

“Some days I feel completely broken and wonder if I’m worth fixing. I’m haunted by memories no one should have to think about, much less relive,” she said at the seventh Ceremony in the Garden. But she offered a thought: “If we believe tomorrow will be better, we can bear today.”

Later, she told a reporter, “I will always be changed. I don’t know that it will get better, but I can be better.” And from volunteer work, becoming an art professor and drafting her memoirs, Stoffer, 34, of Delray Beach is finding ways to better herself and rebuild her life.

Thursday’s annual event, part of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, melded falling blossoms from trees at Mounts Botanical Garden just west of the city with the comfort of therapy dogs and guided relaxation lessons. Boxes of tissues were scattered among the audience of about 60.

A survivor of domestic violence who asked to be identified only as Christine from of southern Palm Beach County said, “My ex-husband was very very sick, and was dangerous,” when she sought help at a police station for herself and a child. People around her didn’t believe her story because her husband concealed his alcoholism.

“True strength is keeping it all together when everyone around you would understand if it all fell apart,” she said. She said she learned to take life day by day when she had to. Sometimes, it became hour by hour and even minute by minute.

Angela Johnson, whose son was gunned down in South Bay one morning as he walked his dog two years ago, realized she only talked about Harry Johnson, 35, if she was talking about his murder. She’d never thought of herself as a victim until someone referred her to Palm Beach County’s victim services department, which helped her.

“When I need to cry, I cry. But I choose to live,” said Johnson, whose voice broke as she described finding her son’s body at the crime scene. “… You are stronger than you think. You are stronger than you know.”

“Those messages can help other victims,” said Nicole Bishop, director of the county’s victim services department, which helps about 3,600 people a year.

“Some hope can come from sharing those stories,” she said.

The organization offers advocacy, therapy, support groups, help with restraining orders, and other services. People needing help can call a 24-hour hotline at (561) 833-7273.

Other local events in National Crime Victims’ Rights Week include a Walk For Victims’ Rights, with registration beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday at Currie Park, 2400 N. Flagler Drive in West Palm Beach. People can learn more at www.sa15.org online.

Palm Beach County Green Dot

Pet and Women Safety Act (PAWS)

This Bill to Protect Domestic-Violence Victim’s Pets Could Save Women’s Lives

By 

puppies

“Domestic abusers often extend their behavior to their victims’ pets, threatening and harming them as a means of control over their owner. That, coupled with the fact that only 3 percent of domestic-violence shelters accommodate pets, makes it difficult for women to leave an abusive situation for fear of what will happen to their pets. Some women delay leaving, some return to abusive situations, while others have reported resorting to living out of their cars so that they can keep both themselves and their pets safe.

The Pet and Women Safety (PAWS) Act, reintroduced in Congress earlier this week, aims “to protect victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence from emotional and psychological trauma caused by acts of violence or threats of violence against their pets.”

Katherine Clark, a Democratic congresswoman from Massachusetts who, along with nearly 180 representatives across the aisle, is sponsoring the bill released a statement saying, “Pets often become a member of the family, and the idea of leaving a beloved pet behind in a dangerous situation is unthinkable. By ensuring that people experiencing domestic abuse don’t have to make the decision between finding safety for themselves or staying behind to protect their pet, we can empower survivors to seek help.”

Under H.R. 909, federal domestic-violence protections would also include threats and violence against pets. In addition to that, the bill would extend grant funding to the domestic-violence shelters that do provide pet housing, and include any veterinary costs in restitution payments.

If passed, the PAWS Act could be a life-saver for women attempting to leave an abusive situation but in a bind because of their pets. A New York Timesarticle about the Urban Resource Institute, which provides pet-friendly housing for domestic-violence victims New York City, included the story of one Queens woman who was killed by her abusive boyfriend in 2014. She had returned home that night because she was terrified for her dog’s safety.”

— information courtesy of NYMag.com (full article in link)

Walk for the Link

Animal fun walk5

Please visit their website for more information:  South Florida Link Coalition

Image

Strangulation Training

DV Stranguation Prevention Training Flyer