The distinguished panel of speakers included Elizabeth Miller, Chief of Division of Adolescent Medicine for the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC; Joe Torre, Major League Baseball and Founder and Chairman of the Joe Torre Safe At Home Foundation; and Gloria Terry, President of the Texas Council on Family violence; all of whom spoke on the impact of engaging men in prevention efforts.Speakers on the subject of teen dating violence prevention strategies included Debbie Lee, Vice President of Futures Without Violence; Gabrielle Union, Award-winning actress and sexual assault advocate; Erin O’Malley, Dean of Faculty and Counseling at Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington, VA; and Yesenia Romo, Director of YWCA Metropolitan Chicago’s Sexual Violence and Support Services.While this usually signals the transition into the beautiful springtime weather (although, who are we kidding, the average temperature here in DC for the past three months has been about 55 degrees) the end of February also marks the culmination of Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.Today, JWI and Futures Without Violence, the YWCA, Men Can Stop Rape, the American School Counselor Association hosted a briefing on Capitol Hill titled .In creating a safe environment, young people will hopefully feel more comfortable discussing this personal issue and seeking help when needed.The speeches of Congressman Dave Reichert, Congresswoman Gwen Moore, and Congressman John Lewis exemplify that the fight for legislative action should be a bipartisan achievement.
Only a third of teens in violent relationships ever tell anyone about the abuse.Teen dating violence can be physical, emotional, sexual, and verbal.Many local teens experience it but some may not know it’s a problem.During Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month (TDVAM), we aim to break the cycle of violence by providing support and services to victims, their families and their communities. The Family Violence Prevention and Services Program at the Administration for Children and Families is working to bring visibility to the work of advocates, the strength of victims, and the Federal initiatives addressing this pervasive issue by hosting social media events and webinars throughout the month of February.The following activities represent just a few of the exciting ways that everyone can – and hopefully will – engage in this work: Blog! Click here to access their calendar of events (PDF, 2 pages). Everyone can make a difference by reaching out to young people in simple ways.Indeed, children who are victimized or witness violence frequently bring this experience with them to the playground, the classroom, later into teen relationships and, ultimately, they can end up the victims and perpetrators of adult intimate partner violence.How Do I Participate in Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month?This is an issue that impacts everyone – not just teens – but their parents, teachers, friends and communities as well.Together, we can raise the nation’s awareness about teen dating violence and promote safe, healthy relationships.They say awareness about dating violence is the key to ending it.As hard as it is to believe, February has almost come to an end.