November 19, 2008
Yesterday in Washington, DC, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice added her name to the UNIFEM-led Say NO to Violence against Women campaign. Her statement follows:
“One year ago, the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) began its global campaign to advocate among publics and governments for an end to violence against women. In the course of the year, we have taken important steps to address this issue.
“During its June 2008 Security Council Presidency, the United States focused on actions that would follow from UN Security Council Resolution 1325, on ‘Women, Peace, and Security.’ On June 19, the United States chaired an open Security Council thematic discussion on the topic of violence in situations of armed conflict. The debate culminated in adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1820, which condemns the use of sexual violence in conflict and post-conflict situations.
“Violence against women remains a fact of life in countries worldwide. Like poverty, HIV/AIDS, poor maternal health, and lack of access to education, violence against women is an ill that affects the person, her community, and her nation.
“As the campaign to ‘Say No to Violence against Women’ enters its second year, we should dedicate ourselves to creating awareness among individuals and communities of the great damage violence against women inflicts, and commit ourselves to end this atrocity.”
Violence against women continues to persist as one of the most heinous, systematic and prevalent human rights abuses in the world. It is a threat to all women, and an obstacle to all our efforts for development, peace and gender equality in all societies. -Secretary General of the United Nations , Ban Ki-moon
The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. They invite governments, international organizations and non-governmental organizations to organize activities on that day to raise public awareness on violence against women. Women’s activists have marked November 25 as a day against violence since 1981. The date came from the brutal 1961 assassination of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic, on orders of Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo. The U.N. resolution was passed December 17, 1999.
More information and resources
United Nations Development Fund for Women – Statement from the Executive Director
This year’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women marks a defining moment in the global drive to end violence against women. Fuelled by advocacy and action at the grassroots and national levels, the issue has moved to centre stage at the United Nations. In March 2008 the Secretary-General launched his global campaign, UNiTE to End Violence against Women. Its duration through 2015, the deadline for meeting the MDGs, is a challenge for all of us, governments, civil society as well as the international community to take the actions needed to stop this prevalent human rights violation. . . .
To protect women from violence, and respond to the needs of survivors, we urge the adoption of accountability frameworks, with minimal standards of protection and response. These provide a checklist against which to assess the degree to which a country is upholding the human rights of women. Among the measures which should be in place are:
- Prompt police response, health and legal services, free of charge, for poor women and girls;
- Shelters and safe options for women surviving or fleeing life-threatening situations;
- National hotlines available 24-hours a day to report abuse and seek protection;
- Basic front-line services for emergency and immediate care for women and girls who have suffered abuse and rape; and
- Accountable judiciary and national action plans to end discrimination and promote equality.
International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence (UNIFEM)
Twenty-one individuals attended a one-day training on “Domestic Violence, the law enforcement response” on Thursday, November 13 at the Yuma Police Department. Law enforcement officers and related service people in Colorado’s 13th Judicial District were invited to participate. Eight hours of POST continuing education credits were available for eligible personnel.
The class was provided through SHARE, Inc., a domestic violence program based in Morgan County, with funds from an Office of Violence Against Women Rural Grant. Law enforcement and related personnel from the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, Yuma County Sheriff’s Department, the Wray and Yuma Police Departments attended. Also attending were individuals from Rural Communities Resource Center, Yuma; Washington County Connections in Akron; and Help for Abused Partners, Logan County, all community-based advocacy organizations.
The law enforcement training team is made up of Detective Dave Kallweit and Jacob Fajardo, Morgan County Sheriff’s Department, and Yolanda Morales-Leon, SHARE, Inc. Kallweit is the Specialized Domestic Violence Investigator funded through SHARE’s rural grant. In addition to training, his other responsibilities include collaboration with all other law enforcement agencies in Morgan County in crime scene investigation, consultation to law enforcement agencies in the 13th Judicial District, and leadership on the Morgan County Domestic Violence Response Team.
“SHARE is really happy to have had the funding to provide this training in the 13th Judicial District and we are extremely pleased with the number of law enforcement officers that took part in the training,” said Jacque Morse, SHARE Executive Director.
For more information or to arrange for law enforcement or advocate training, contact Morse at (970) 867-4444.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Former Memphis Police Officer Indicted on Civil Rights Charges
WASHINGTON – Bridges McRae, former officer of the Memphis Police Department, was indicted today on one count of deprivation of rights under color of law, related to the alleged assault of an individual in early 2008.
The indictment, unsealed today, alleges that on Feb. 12, 2008, McRae exercised unreasonable force, used a dangerous weapon, and caused bodily injury to a person in his custody. According to the indictment, McRae was on duty in the intake area of the Shelby County Jail when he repeatedly struck the victim with his fist and handcuffs.
If convicted, McRae faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Memphis Police Department. This case is being prosecuted by Jonathan Skrmetti, Trial Attorney for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, and Steve Parker, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee.
Office for Victims of Crime Directory of Crime Victim Services is an OVC resource designed to help service providers and individuals locate nonemergency crime victim service agencies in the United States and abroad. Search by location, type of victim, service needed, agency type.
Victim service program or organization can join the directory network to help provide crime victims with the best possible services.
Feminist Daily News Wire
November 12, 2008
Supreme Court Hears Case on Gun Rights for Domestic Violence Abusers
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday on a federal gun ban that affects individuals convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence charges. In 1996, lawmakers approved an amendment to a federal gun ban that restricted those convicted of violent felonies from owning guns to include those convicted of “misdemeanor crime[s] of domestic violence”, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Last year, the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the ban did not apply to individuals who were convicted of assault or battery that took place in their homes, but only to those convicted under a state’s domestic violence law. The federal gun ban could be lifted for many domestic violence abusers because most states do not have misdemeanor domestic violence laws.
Both the Brady Center to prevent Gun Violence and Legal Momentum, a New York women’s advocacy group, support the current federal ban. According to Women’s eNews, Legal Momentum found that when domestic violence abusers are in possession of a gun, they are 12 times more likely to kill their victims. The Brady Center noted the ban also prevents deaths of police officers who respond to domestic violence cases.
More information see previous post U.S. v. Hayes
They’re calling it the largest domestic violence sweep in the country.
A joint news conference of area law enforcement agencies took place on Thursday in Downtown Fresno to announce the results of the domestic violence crackdown.
The Fresno Police Department, Fresno County Sheriff’s Department, Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, Fresno County Probation Department took part in the operation with assistance from the Marjorie Masson Center.
The agencies took part in the day-long sweep, where they were looking for 100 known parolees and probation violators, with the search stretching from Selma to San Francisco. The operation began at 6:00 AM Wednesday morning and ended just after midnight on Thursday. Forty-seven arrests were made with forty-five being felony arrests, twenty were parole violators and some were even Bulldog Gang members.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said this is a very important operation because 30% of all homicides in Fresno are related to domestic violence.
Fresno Police Chief Dyer says in the first 9 months of this year, they have already investigated 4800 cases of domestic violence in the City of Fresno.