Domestic Violence Resources

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This resource page was created in the memory of those in our community whose lives were affected by, or lost, to acts of domestic violence.  

This page is also created to raise awareness about domestic violence in all its forms. By doing so you could save your life or the lives of others you know.

Observe it.  Educate yourself.  Learn the signs.

There is no excuse for domestic violence. No one deserves it. No one asks for it. 

It comes in many forms: physical, psychological, sexual, technological, financial and includes stalking.

Abusers utilize whatever means they deem necessary to exert control over their victims. Today's technology, while not intended for this purpose, makes it frighteningly easy. Domestic violence is about control and power. Violence breeds pain, trauma, fear, broken bones ... homicides.                                                                         

It is a learned behavior. And because it is a learned behavior; our children are at risk – not just physically and mentally. An abused child can grow up to be an adult abuser. Stopping the cycle of violence and abuse is vitally important to ending it. 

 Make this your mantra: There is NO excuse for domestic violence! Absolutely NONE.

                          

 

                                                                                            

     Every year, approximately 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner. It is also known that 3 in 4 parents have never talked to their children about domestic violence. In light of these alarming facts, every year during the month of February advocates join efforts to raise awareness about dating violence, highlight promising practices, and encourage communities to get involved. ~ from National Resource Center on Domestic Violence website page

 

Stalking is a crime.

Not only in Maine, but in every state in the country.

What is stalking? In Maine it is defined as: "intentionally or knowingly engages in a course of conduct directed at, or concerning a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to suffer serious inconvenience or emotional distress; to fear bodily injury or fear bodily injury to a relation; to fear death or to fear the death of a close relative; to fear damage or destruction to or tampering with property; or to fear injury or death of an animal owned by or in the possession or control of the specified person."

Being stalked creates fear and anxiety in its victims. According to www.stalkingawarenessmonth.org, one in four women and one in three men will be stalked in their lifetime.

To be stalked is not flattering. The action does not reflect love. It is intrusive and impacts the lives of victims at their home, place of employment and anywhere they may go.

New Hope For Women (NHFW) serves the counties of Lincoln, Knox, Waldo and Sagadahoc, offering support to people affected by domestic violence in all its forms: domestic violence, dating violence and stalking. NHFW also provides educational resources for the public, schools, other domestic violence related agencies, hospitals, and medical offices.

Philosophy

“New Hope For Women believes that the misuse of power to demean or control others fosters oppression and violence. This manifests itself as racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, religious bigotry, domestic abuse and other forms of violence. New Hope for Women believes that a just and peaceful society must commit itself to confronting and overcoming all forms of oppression and violence.”

NHFW and the former Domestic Abuse Prevention Council of Boothbay co-sponsored teen dating violence programming at Boothbay Region High School including the presentation of "Jake and Caroline."

NHFW's batterer’s intervention program, Time For Change, is a 48-week educational program for men who abuse their partners. It should be noted (according to NHFW) that most of the men participating in this program have been ordered to do so by the legal system. For more information on this program, call 207-594-0270.

NHFW's most well-known visual awareness initiatives, An Empty Place At the Table, has been set in churches, libraries, museums, and other quiet locations since 2002. The initiative first appeared in Pennsylvania. A dinner table six empty chairs bears the place settings of five victims of domestic violence homicide, donated by families.

The place settings usually include photographs of the victims and sometimes other belongings. The sixth setting remains empty to honor unknown and/or unnamed victims. "An Empty Place at the Table" is  displayed during the month of October, National Domestic Violence Awareness Month" at various locations throughout the counties on a rotating weekly basis. Visit NHFW's website to arrange for the display at a location in your town, or, to add a setting.  http://www.newhopeforwomen.org/empty-place-at-the-table

NHFW has a 24-hour hotline - 1-800-522-3304 -  operated by trained professionals ready to listen and to help all callers.

New Hope For Women’s main office is located at 5 Beech Street in Rockland. 207-594-2128. Open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Satellite offices

Bath: 12 Court Street. 207-443-8898. Hours: Monday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and by appointment

Belfast: 6 Public Safety Way. 207-338-6569. Hours: Monday & Thursday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment

Wiscasset:  207-882-6222

 

 

This report, released in 2009, by the U.S. Department of Justice, provides important information from a 2006 survey.

Legislation addressing stalking became law in 1995. Stalking, on first conviction, is a Class D crime. The sentence is a minimum of 60 days, but all but 48 hours may be suspended. An individual convicted of stalking may also be ordered to attend a court approved abuser education program, such as New Hope For Women's "Time For A Change."

If two or more offenses are committed and the individual convicted of stalking, it is a Class C crime. The other offenses could include violating protection orders. The sentence in this case is at least 6 months, but all but 14 days may be suspended. 

For over 30 years, the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MECASA) has represented and served Maine’s sexual violence service providers. MECASA works toward ending sexual violence by providing public  policy advocacy, assistance to Maine’s sexual violence service providers,  public awareness and prevention activities, and statewide training.

MECASA's  efforts

    • Initiating and advocating for victim-centered public policy;
    • Providing support and assistance to Maine's sexual violence service providers and  serving as a liaison between the centers and our statewide and national partners;
    • Reducing common myths and misperceptions about sexual violence through building and sustaining public awareness; and
    • Providing  expert training, statistics, and resources about sexual violence to  organizations, groups, and individuals throughout the state. Source: agency's website.

   Reach an advocate by calling the statewide 24-hour sexual assault crisis and support line at 1-800-871-7741 (TTY 1-888-458-5599).                                           

Healthy Kids, located at 15 Belvedere Road in Damariscotta, asks: “Are you the parent you want to be?”

And then answers that question through action with compassion offering activities - for parents and children, a parenting blog, Parent Talk TV series, home visits, parenting classes, nurturing and parenting workshops for each developmental level, offers alternatives to spanking as a means of discipline, provides a place for supervised visitations, CPR training, give parents skills to cope with the stresses of child rearing, and so much more.

 

Playgroups

For kids infant through age 5, and moms and/or dads or grandparents, are held at the following locations fall - spring:

In Damariscotta: Mondays - 10 a.m. to noon at Healthy Kids , 15 Belvedere St.

In Boothbay Harbor: Wednesdays - 10 a.m. to noon, Boothbay Region YMCA, Townsend Avenue/Route 27, Boothbay Harbor

In Waldoboro:  Fridays - 10 a.m. to noon, United Methodist Church, Friendship Street

 

 

 

Founded in 1995,  the Institute has sponsored statewide conferences, provided train-the-trainer and workplace training workshops, produced public service announcements and are currently providing transitional housing support and outreach services for older victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Toll free number: 1-888-819-3666.

Adult Protective Service 24-hour hotline: 1-800-624-8404.

The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920 and is our nation's guardian of liberty. The ACLU works in the courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to all people in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

A new report by the ACLU and scholars from the University of Miami School of Law and CUNY School of Law exposes the widespread discrimination that survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence feel they face when dealing with law enforcement. 
 
In September 2014, Vice President Joe Biden marked the 20th anniversary of the Violence against Women Act (VAWA). While this was celebratory, it was also reflective and marked a unique opportunity to explore how law enforcement responds to domestic violence and sexual assault. This is particularly timely given both the historic concern with law enforcement's failure to respond to domestic violence and sexual assault and the growing public attention to mass incarceration, its multiple and racially disproportionate impacts, and racial bias in policing. 
 
A team of lawyers, professors and students from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), City University of New York School of Law (CUNY), and the University of Miami, with the assistance of the American Bar Association (ABA), came together to capture stories from advocates, service providers, and others who work with survivors. From the outset, the team sought to collect narratives and examples from the field regarding experiences of survivors and their families with police.
 
The ACLU surveyed over 900 advocates, service providers, and attorneys who work with survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence from across the country about their concerns regarding policing and recommendations for improvement. The report found that:
  • An overwhelming majority of the respondents (88%) reported that police "sometimes" or "often" do not believe victims or blamed victims for the violence.
  • A similarly large majority (83%) reported that police "sometimes" or "often" do not take allegations of sexual assault and domestic violence seriously.
  • Over 80% believed that police relations with marginalized communities influenced their clients'/members' willingness to call the police 
To read highlights of the report click here: Highlights of ACLU Report
 
 
The ACLU identified several key issues that advocates, service providers, attorneys, and others named as central concerns regarding how police respond to domestic and sexual violence and additional reasons that some survivors do not contact the police or cooperate with criminal interventions. 
This important report from the ACLU raises many concerns, but also makes recommendations to enact a better response in policing of domestic violence.  This unique insight into the experience of hundreds of advocates, service providers, and attorneys working with domestic violence survivors provides valuable information that needs consideration as we move forward in tackling the complex issues related to domestic violence. 
MFOA

Maine Friends of Animals (MFOA) is a statewide organization that promotes the humane treatment of animals through education, advocacy and legislation.

Since 1997, MFOA has been Maine's leading voice for animal protection, working tirelessly to end animal cruelty in our state.

MFOA is dedicated to improving the lives of all Maine animals — domestic, farm and wildlife.

Some of the ways MFOA works for change:

Legislation/lobbying

Focused contact with lawmakers to advance animal friendly legislation. Legislative information and action for members on pending legislation, campaigns and strategies for influence.

Political engagement 

Recruiting, endorsing and actively supporting animal-friendly legislators.

Education outreach

Animal advocacy education for schools, fairs, public events, conferences, civic organizations and the media.

Resource center

Information, video and research center available to groups and individuals interested in animal protection.

 

The Maine Homicide Review Panel (excerpt from current report)

By law effective October 1, 1997, the Maine Legislature charged the Maine Commission on Domestic and Sexual Abuse with the task of establishing a Domestic Abuse Homicide Review Panel to “review the deaths of persons who are killed by family or household members.”

The legislation mandated that the Panel “recommend to state and local agencies methods of improving the systems for protecting persons from domestic and sexual abuse including modifications of laws, rules, policies, and procedures following completion of adjudication.” The Panel was further mandated “to collect and compile data related to domestic and sexual abuse.” 19-A M.R.S. §4013(4). See Appendix A for the complete language of the Panel’s enabling legislation.

The Maine Domestic Abuse Homicide Review Panel meets on a monthly basis to review and discuss domestic abuse homicide cases. The Panel Coordinator works with the prosecutor and/or the lead detective to present to the multidisciplinary Panel an overview of the homicide, information about the relationship of the parties, and any relevant events leading up to the homicide.

Homicide cases are presented to the Panel after sentencing. Homicide-suicide cases are presented once the investigation is complete. The Panel reviews these tragedies in order to identify potential trends about domestic abuse and recommend systemic changes that could prevent future deaths from occurring in Maine.

The panel plays a significant role in the prevention and intervention work that is occurring in Maine by gathering opinions and expertise from a variety of professional disciplines across the state.