October 18 education session: domestic violence
October’s education program on Domestic Violence began with a reading of the 11 questions that comprise the Lethality Assessment Program (LAP), developed in Maryland and now used by first responders nationally. The LAP assesses an abuse victim’s immediate risk of life-threatening violence. AAWGT members and guests then were guided through an exercise that helped them visually understand the large percentage of women affected by domestic abuse in America (1 out of every 3) and the tiny percentage of cases actually reported (1 out of 4).
Moderator Nancy Davis introduced guest panelists Rae Leonard, Abuse and Domestic Violence Coordinator at Anne Arundel Medical Center, Wes Adams, State’s Attorney of Anne Arundel County, and Molly Knipe, Executive Director of the YWCA. The audience learned about new protocols for early detection in the medical community, recent changes in the legal system to increase victims’ rights and protection, and the comprehensive services available in Anne Arundel County, including a safe house and full-service counseling and legal services for victims and their children. Molly, who is an AAWGT member, announced that ground has just been broken on a new campus in Arnold that will expand these services. A special guest who spent time at the safe house shared how her life was dramatically changed over the last 8 months as she moved from desperate victim to empowered survivor. She is now working full-time, purchasing her own condo, and preparing to relocate her children near her.
Audience members asked a number of questions of all 3 panelists. They were also invited to learn more about preventing escalation of violence through a free 90-minute workshop that was hosted by AAWGT and the One Love Foundation on Tuesday, November 28th at Calvary United Methodist Church in Annapolis.