Massachusetts White Ribbon Day 2018

PetsEmpower-White-Ribbon-Day

Since 1991 men have joined in the fight against domestic violence by wearing white ribbons to show their solidarity with the cause. This action is due to the efforts of White Ribbon, a global campaign designed to “inspire changes in policy, practice and culture to address the root causes of gender-based violence” (White Ribbon). The White Ribbon campaign is asking men to be part of the solution to domestic violence rather than part of the problem. In Massachusetts, White Ribbon is partnering with Jane Doe Inc. (JDI), a state-wide membership coalition and advocacy group working to change “the way society views and reacts to sexual and domestic violence in ways that make our communities safer today and for future generations” (Jane Doe Inc). Jane Doe Inc. began Massachusetts White Ribbon Day in 2008 as one … Read More

PetsEmpower 2018 Pet Art Show: Accepting Submissions

PetsEmpower proudly presents a pet art show this spring in Boston! Pet parents and their companions in Boston (and anywhere else!) have deep emotional ties. We’d love to connect with artists of all types and experience levels for submissions depicting this very special relationship. Artists will be publicized and invited to the opening. Please email jordan@petsempower.org or call 617 386 6192 to learn more. Join our mailing list to be sure you get details on the pet show and other news from PetsEmpower. Someone in crisis who is courageously overcoming challenges shouldn’t have to worry about keeping their pet. PetsEmpower works with domestic violence survivors, veterans, addicts and others to arrange temporary pet fostering.

The Silencing of Immigrant Domestic Violence Vicitms

Immigrant women are often at higher risk for domestic violence than other women in America. This is due to the fact that there are often huge differences in cultural norms when it comes to the treatment of women. Many of the cultures that these women come from view domestic abuse as the norm. This often leads immigrant women to be afraid to speak out about their abuse, as their cultural norm is one of silence in the face of mistreatment. Even if an immigrant woman is bold enough to speak out, there is often a lack of access between herself and any sort of help. Immigrant women are often not even aware of their rights within the American legal system. This is largely the result of something as simple as a language barrier. There are … Read More

British MP Calls for Domestic Violence Register

In the United Kingdom this month, a Welsh Member of Parliament (MP) named Liz Saville Roberts urged the British government to introduce a compulsory domestic violence register. She is certainly not the first to address this matter, but calls for action were renewed after Theodore Johnson, who already had two manslaughter convictions, was charged with the murder of his ex-girlfriend. This has generated much conversation amongst the British press who are now asking ‘is a law-enforced domestic violence register the next logical step in protecting vulnerable people from abuse?’ Clare’s Law Since 2014 there has been legislation in place called ‘Clare’s Law’ across England, Wales and Scotland. Under ‘Clare’s Law’, anybody who suspects someone of abusive behavior can apply to the police for disclosure of their criminal record. This ‘right to ask’ measure is named … Read More

California Wildfire: Safe Ways to Help Animals

For the last two weeks, California and much of the western-coast has been subject to raging wildfire, caused by extreme heat, high winds and unusually low levels of humidity. The Thomas fire has so far damaged a staggering 800 homes and 230,000 acres of land across both Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.[1] While the priority has been saving as many human lives and preventing as much damage to property as possible, there has also been a lot of news coverage regarding animal safety and rescue; this applies to both livestock and household pets. Some of this coverage has provided contradictory guidance in terms of whether or not you should help these animals, and how you can do this without putting yourself at risk. With this in mind, we thought we would list a few ways … Read More

Time’s 2017 Person of the Year is “The Silence Breakers”

The Silence Breakers

When Donald Trump tweeted that he turned down Time’s Person of the Year, I thought how powerful would it be if The Person of the Year was women. In 2017 we have seen women from all backgrounds win elections, fight for change in big ways and break the silence surrounding sexual assault and harassment in the United States. While I am always proud to be a woman, 2017 has given me a different sense of pride. 2017 has proven that women are not to be messed with. On December 6th Time released its Person of the Year issue: The Silence Breakers. The Silence Breakers are the women, and some men, who triggered a national movement. The Silence Breakers are women and men who found the courage to speak out about their experiences with sexual harassment … Read More

Ramifications of College Campus Sexual Assaults

The Shocking Lack of Consequences for College Campus Sexual Assault Perpetrators in the US On one seemingly normal January night in 2015, a woman on the Stanford campus went to a party. The next thing she would be aware of was waking up on hospital covered in bandages and bruises. This woman was sexually assaulted that night behind a dumpster during the party she was attending. She was unconscious when it happened. What this woman did not know that when she innocently went out that night, was that she was about to become the center of one of the most publicized college sexual assault cases in US history (BuzzFeed News). This woman, known today only as Emily Doe, was assaulted by the now infamous former Stanford swimmer Brock Turner. Brock Turner, a privileged and popular … Read More

Troubling TV: Domestic Violence in HBO’s ‘Big Little Lies’

During spring this year, HBO launched a seven-part miniseries called Big Little Lies, based on Liane Moriarty’s novel of the same title. The show was incredibly popular, earning high-ratings and winning several awards, but this is not simply down to the cast. Refreshingly, Big Little Lies is based around the lives of three female protagonists. The show explores in detail their marriages, friendships, and relationships with their children, all the while hinting that these storylines will lead to the death of a main character. It is clear from the opening episode of Big Little Lies that violence is prevalent in the lives of these characters, and it permeates the plot in three significant ways. The story begins with the arrival of single mom Jane Chapman and her young son, who seek a fresh start in … Read More

Harvey Weinstein and the Silence Around Sexual Assault

Over the last month, the film industry has been staggered by the emergence of eighty-two separate allegations made against bigshot producer Harvey Weinstein.[1] In the initial allegations, several high profile celebrities accused him of rape, sexual assault, and coercion, and these reports seem to have opened the floodgates. Indeed, since the Weinstein scandal began, many other Hollywood giants have been marked as sexual predators in the media, including the former head of Amazon Studios Roy Price, House of Cards actor Kevin Spacey and director James Toback. What is striking about these allegations, aside from the horrific nature of the experiences they recount, is the sheer volume of them. Both men and women across the film, fashion, and music industries are coming forward, finally reporting incidents that took place years ago, sometimes decades. This epidemic has … Read More