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Author Topic: Domestic Violence, Financial Stress and the Candidates  (Read 2017 times)
blackrose
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« on: Nov 04, 2008 05:05 PM »


Domestic Violence and Financial Stress
By KRIS DE WELDE

We are in the midst of an economic crisis, that much we know.  October is national Domestic Violence awareness month, something fewer Americans know.  And, we are poised to elect a new President who will address our social and economic needs.  Are these related?  Absolutely.

Earlier this month, my local abuse shelter and resource center, Abuse, Counseling & Treatment (ACT), did something it has never done before.  The center’s director approached the local media, pleading for donations of food and other goods.  Their shelves had gone empty by the second week of the month.  My suspicion is that they are not the only community organization in this predicament.

As the economy continues to unravel, we can expect women and children to become even more vulnerable than they are right now.  Women are more likely to live in poverty, work minimum wage jobs, work part-time, and thus receive fewer benefits despite also shouldering childcare and eldercare responsibilities.  To boot, women overall earn less than men for the same work, and Black and Latina women earn even less (Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the U.S.: 2007). 

Locally and globally, women and children are the most vulnerable, the ones more likely to suffer the harshest consequences of any catastrophe – caused by human error or nature’s fury, or both.  Let us never forget the images of children in New Orleans during the post-Katrina disaster, or the realities faced by their mothers, grandmothers, and sisters.  That historical moment signified the urgency of equal pay for women and wages that enable self-sufficiency, the urgency of equal access to quality education as anti-poverty policy, and the urgency of healthcare for all Americans, especially children.

Financial stress is correlated with higher levels of intimate partner violence, which disproportionately impacts women.  Homelessness goes up in economic slumps, and we know women and children are the fastest growing segment of the homeless – much of this due to their escaping violent relationships.   

As the economic crisis works its way from Wall Street to Main Street, we will see crime, violence, drug/alcohol abuse, and homelessness increase.  As citizens we have the moral responsibility to support our communities.   The needs of our local shelters, rape crisis hotlines, and women’s resource centers should be met by us with the same attention and pressure for action that our legislators turned towards the crisis on Wall Street.

Americans have a well-earned reputation of aiding distressed communities across the globe.  Why is it so difficult to turn that attention inward, to face stark inequality and social ills in our own backyard?   If our spirit of generosity is ignited by images of disaster, then we need to take a serious look around. 

October marks the final weeks of the Presidential campaigns. With the economic collapse making social and economic policy more of a priority for the candidates, we should think clearly about their records on women’s issues, poverty, and domestic violence.  For example, Senator McCain opposes equal pay for women, and opposes restoring family planning services for low-income families – key factors to reducing poverty.  Thanks to our legislators in both primary parties, it also marks a turn in unregulated banking, corporate welfare, and denial of the effects of these on ordinary citizens.  October marks the importance of understanding intimate partner violence, and upholding laws protecting victims (like Senator Biden’s Violence Against Women Act). What do these all have to do with each other?  Clearly, everything.

Kris De Welde is assistant professor of Sociology at Florida Gulf Coast University.

Re-printed from Girl with Pen, www.girlwpen.com

Faizah
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« Reply #1 on: Nov 04, 2008 10:48 PM »

As salaamu alaikum

Thank you for sharing this; indeed domestic violence in all it forms and from all its root causes is rarely spoken about yet isn't going to go away by not talking about it.

Fair pay for women is long overdue; gone are the days of the "traditional" family as we more often find either two-income household or single parent/women headed households and so pay equality is a necessity.

All of the candidates no matter what office they are seeking or their party affiliation or gender don't want to focus on issues that are essential to more than half the population - women - and that have a direct impact on society's children who will one day enter adulthood and take their rightful place in society.  The positive foundation needs to be set now.



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blackrose
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« Reply #2 on: Nov 04, 2008 11:06 PM »

I appreciate the fact that you appreciate what I post. It is only to help and inform. everyone has a right to know where the candiates stand. .. i have alot more info on the woman issues and cadidates but i was afraid it would be too many posts. maybe i will just post the links here. they are very interesting.
I do not mean any harm.. I do hope everyone is benefiting from my posts. It is a very important and historic election
blackrose
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« Reply #3 on: Nov 04, 2008 11:19 PM »

McCain's Disdain for Women's Health
Mocking Our Rights
(has more info on the abortion issue)
here is the link altho I would really like to have post the articles as they are very interesting: http://www.counterpunch.org/colson10242008.html

What the Doctors Saw
McCain's Women Problems
By ALEXANDER COCKBURN
and JEFFREY ST. CLAIR

http://www.counterpunch.org/cockburn10302008.html  (mcain is well known for his anger and many claim he hits his wife)
fatinadawiyah
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« Reply #4 on: Nov 05, 2008 06:23 AM »

Thanks for the sharing. Every women should pay attention about this. Wife cannot be treated like a slave and women cannot be treated unfairly. This awareness should be put on for the men too.


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