Wellspring - Ending relationship and sexual abuse in Saratoga County

Shine a Light Blog

Shine a Light Blog

SSPD: Prepared to Respond When Needed

Be Prepared… it’s the motto of the Boy Scouts, but good advice for all of us. It may even have played a part in the peaceful resolution of a threat against a Skidmore student earlier this week.  

Over the past two weeks all members of the Saratoga Springs Police Department  attended a half-day training by Bob Passano of the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence… little did they know that this training would relate to such a high profile incident just days later. Domestic incidents are among the most common situations police respond to … and they are most dangerous and potentially fatal.

Personally, I appreciate Assistant Chief Veitch’s commitment to public safety by coordinating this training, and the work of law enforcement every day in providing a skilled, professional response to victims of intimate partner violence.

Abuse starts at home, but doesn’t end there.

Did you know?

21% of adults working full-time have been victims of domestic violence.

40% of these victims report being harassed at work by their abuser.

74% of perpetrators had easy access to their partner’s place of employment, and

21% of offenders contacted their victim at work in violation of an order of protection.1

Domestic violence impacts business through decreased productivity, as well as,  increased absenteeism, employee turnover and health-related costs. When violence leaves the home and enters the workplace, not only the targeted employee, but coworkers and customers are also at risk.

You’ve got a busy business to run… what’s an employer to do?

Employees from the Clifton Park offices of Cengage Learning, a leader in creating instructional materials for schools and universities world-wide, saw this need and took action. They created a toolkit to help Saratoga County business owners better understand how relationship abuse impacts the workplace and developed simple tools to help business owners and supervisors increase awareness, promote workplace safety and address situations.  Contact DVRC today to request your Employer Toolkit… don’t wait until your workplace experiences a crisis.

Cengage Learning has developed tools you can put to use right away to promote the safety and well-being of your employees and the health of your business so you can focus on what you do best… running your business.  Call DVRC at 518-583-0280 to request your Employer Toolkit. You can make a difference!

1.Relationship Abuse: Impacting Businesses in Saratoga County, created by Cengage Learning, 2012

Skidmore Lockdown. Tragedy Averted… This Time

At a Soroptimist meeting last night one conversation turned to the recent Skidmore lockdown. It sounds like campus officials and the SSPD worked diligently to protect not only the student who was the target of this threat, but also the campus and our community.  Our local Soroptimist club has had a long-term, passionate investment in helping domestic violence victims. One member said to me, “Wow, this was an unusual incident in how it escalated to such a crisis.” I immediately said, “No it’s not…we hear about coercion, about threats to cause serious injury every day!”  But in one sense she’s correct. This incident was a headline story in the newspaper… that’s not an everyday occurrence. So why wasthis different?  It’s the same fear/terror … the same calculated threat to control … same sense of powerlessness to know when/where the abuser may strike… what’s different?

This one became public; it’s that simple. A campus was on alert for the safety of all students and the community members surrounding the school. Lately we’ve seen too many tragic examples when personal violence has spilled into public areas, causing devastating tragedy. At DVRC  abuse victims often say they spend their lives walking on eggshells around the abuser so the violence doesn’t erupt. In some sense we’ve become a nation that’s walking on eggshells around the issue of violence… we’ve seen too many instances with senseless and unpredictable deaths.
Domestic violence isn’t a women’s issue… it isn’t a private issue…it affects all of us. Yesterday that message resonated very close to home. Let’s heed that message now… we have to work together to END abuse, not just in our own relationships, but in our community. This tragedy was averted… and the next one? 

Later this week look for more posts about what YOU can do.