As the Founder & CEO of an organization that provides services to at-risk victims of domestic violence, one of my biggest challenges winning supporters to our cause is the often reflexive reaction from many among us who simply wonder “why doesn’t she just leave?”
On August 14, 2017, Founder and CEO Steven Dana represented PROTECTION FROM ABUSE at the National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) 2017 Annual Training Event in San Diego, CA.
“I had to have my neighbors come sit in my living room just so I could take a shower. I had to change every bank account, utility account, every password, get two restraining orders, warn my coworkers, friends, and family.” – Jean, a former intimate partner stalking victim and domestic abuse survivor.
According to statistics, approximately 1 in 6 women, and 1 in 19 men, will experience stalking in their lifetime. Roughly two-thirds of female stalking victims are targeted by a current or former intimate partner. But what exactly constitutes the crime of stalking?
Like many of us, I was once a fan of Bill Cosby, and particularly The Cosby Show while it aired. The Cosby Show promoted wholesome family values. The show, and Mr. Cosby himself, did not shy away from confronting difficult social issues of the time.
The risks are clear. Direct intervention in a domestic violence incident can be dangerous, and should rarely ever be undertaken alone, or by non-professionals.