Monday, November 3, 2014

PGSO Domestic Violence Awareness Month Annual Partnership Luncheon

(Closes Month-Long Schedule of Events to Promote Awareness)

Upper Marlboro, MD…The Prince George’s County Office of the Sheriff’s Domestic Violence Intervention Division (DVID) closed a month-long schedule of Domestic Violence Awareness Month events with its annual partnership luncheon Thursday at Sheriff’s Headquarters.

The luncheon was hosted by Denise McCain and Mandrel Birks of WHUR 96.3 FM, with a discussion theme: “Are we asking the right questions? Victim blaming vs. Abuser Accountability.”  
In attendance were over 50 professionals from county and state organizations, including law enforcement, criminal justice agencies and organizations, advocacy groups and service providers. Each of them represented a commitment to victim advocacy, raising awareness about domestic violence and eliminating domestic violence in communities statewide.

The keynote speaker, Dr. Tricia Bent-Goodley, Professor of Social Work and Director of the Doctoral Program at Howard University, spoke briefly on a range of issues and needs in domestic violence and urged guests to think about how those needs can be filled. 

A recognized expert in the area of domestic violence, Dr. Bent-Goodley conducted an independent evaluation of DVID program services in comparison to other law enforcement agencies and industry best practices.  In a 2013 report, she focused on the Special Victim Advocates and the Supplemental Report/lethality assessment used by Deputies responding to an emergency domestic violence call. She called the program a full-service protocol with benefits that should be available countywide.    

“I’m always pleased to be with our partners with whom we do this important work every day,” said Sheriff High. “Together, our goal is to fill the needs of individuals, families and children who are impacted by domestic violence. This luncheon is a time for us to look back over the previous year’s work and to assess our capacity and processes going forward, including how we can prevent domestic violence by make the next generation a safe generation.”

The partnership luncheon is the final event in a month-long schedule of domestic violence events with the message: Domestic Violence Has No Place in Our Community. The events included Information Exchanges in communities, shopping centers and Metro stations to share information and build awareness about domestic violence.  

The Sheriff’s Office also launched “Purple Light Nights” in Maryland - a national domestic violence awareness program now in 23 states, Canada and Guam - with a lighting ceremony in Upper Marlboro.  The ceremony included distributing purple light bulbs and urging every household in the county to display a purple light on their porch or in their window to raise awareness and be a unified voice in the county against domestic violence. 

For more information contact the Communications and Public Affairs Division at 301-780-7354.

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