The following is a true story. However, some identifying details have been changed to ensure the safety of the story’s subject. Beth smiles and shakes my hand confidently when we meet. There is a reserve about her, though, a hesitation in the way she first approaches me, that I understand once she begins sharing her story. […]
MaineFocus on Sexual Violence: This year, we will examine child victims, whose lives are forever altered and the crime against them is often unrecognized, misunderstood or ignored. We’ll also examine programs that treat sex offenders, many of whom were victimized themselves as children. What can Maine do help kids and break this cycle?
MaineFocus on Domestic Violence: We will turn our attention to rehabilitation of domestic violence offenders in Maine. From the Maine State Prison to small anti-violence nonprofits, offenders are given the chance to change. The question: Will they?
“Why did you stay?” It’s a question that often feels like blame to victims of domestic violence. You might as well be asking, “What’s wrong with you?” What’s wrong is that quite often the perpetrator has set a trap. Understanding why a victim stays in an abusive relationship is lesson No. 1 for understanding the dynamics of domestic violence. […]
In the wake of a recent suicide of a local teacher following an investigation of sexual exploitation of a minor (as reported by the BDN), the community of Bangor is reeling. As details unfold, parents and concerned adults have many questions about how to keep the children and teens in their lives safe from harm. […]
Education, economic security, health care, safety, leadership. If Maine can improve these areas for women and girls, it can lift up the state. March is Women’s History Month. On March 13, Maine’s Permanent Commission on the Status of Women released it’s second biennial report, “The 2015 Report on the Status of Women & Girls in […]
We live in a world that is increasingly driven by technology. Our lives are more connected than ever through the web, and we rely on devices and apps to communicate and conduct our daily business. For many of us, this near-constant interconnectedness is the new normal. Unfortunately, for survivors of domestic and sexual violence this […]
Reproductive coercion. It’s a significant fear for many people in abusive relationships. And it’s rarely discussed publicly. So three area organizations brought “My Body, My Voice” — a readers’ theater production originally developed in 2010 to raise awareness about the use of reproductive coercion as a tactic of power and control — to the Next Generation […]
Hooking up. Hanging out. Facebook official. Regardless of what teens call their romantic and/or sexual relationships, teens deserve to be happy, healthy and safe. Teen dating violence is a significant problem in Maine communities, and everyone has a role to play in its prevention and intervention. Approximately 9 percent of high school students have been […]
January is National Stalking Awareness Month, and as it draws to a close, we here at the Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence are thinking about stalking — about what it looks like, how we talk about it and respond to it, and how it impacts people’s lives. The definition of stalking recommended by the National Stalking Resource […]
In the last few years, I have had the opportunity to deliver training on human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation to nearly 700 direct service providers and law enforcement officers from every county in the state. In that time, two things in particular struck me: the number of times I’ve been approached by Mainers who believe […]
Last week, Maine Focus published a piece describing how a vast majority of domestic violence offenders convicted in Maine courts are not ordered to attend a batterers’ intervention program as part of their probation. Instead, most batterers are required to complete psychological counseling and anger management, despite broad consensus by experts and state agencies that […]