WASHINGTON – Attorney General Eric Holder and Director of the Office on Violence Against Women, Susan B. Carbon today opened the first meeting of the re-chartered National Advisory Committee on Violence Against Women (NAC). The attorney general spoke with committee members, federal agency representatives and public guests about the importance of the work of the committee and their advice to improve the nation’s response to violence against women including domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking.
"Addressing violence by implementing bold, innovative and collaborative solutions is a top priority for this administration," said Attorney General Holder. "We are committed to engaging a broad spectrum of community partners to help stem teen dating violence and safeguard our children"
The 15 member committee will provide practical and general policy advice to the Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services with a specific focus on successful interventions with children and teens who witness or are victimized by intimate partner and sexual violence. The committee will focus on the effective coordinated approach among agencies, organizations and federal, state, local and tribal governments. The link to the well-being of children to the safety and well-being of their mothers will also be explored.
Addressing the issue of children’s exposure to violence as victims or witnesses is a priority of the attorney general. He encouraged the committee to work toward the creation of a strategic, comprehensive action plan that can help more young people to understand and develop healthy relationships, to identify signs of abuse and to assist them in locating services if necessary. During today’s meeting committee members discussed priorities for their future work.
The 15 members of the NAC are:
· Dr. Jeffrey L. Edleson, Professor and Director of Research
University of Minnesota School of Social Work, St. Paul, Minn.
· Maria Jose Fletcher, Esq.,
Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center, Miami
· Neil Irvin, Executive Director
Men Can Stop Rape, Washington, D.C.
· Amber Johnson, Youth Advocate
· Monika Johnson Hostler, Executive Director
North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault, Raleigh, N.C.
· Debbie Lee, Senior Vice President
Family Violence Prevention Fund, San Francisco
· Susan Manheimer, Chief of Police
San Mateo Police Department, San Mateo, Calif.
· Betsy McAlister Groves, Director
Child Witness to Violence Project, Department of Pediatrics, Boston Medical Center, Boston
· Carol Post, Executive Director
Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Wilmington , Del.
· Francine Sherman , Esq., Clinical Professor
Boston College Law School, Newton, Mass.
· The Honorable Melvin Stoof , Associate Judge
Pascua Yaqui Tribal Court , Tucson, Ariz.
· Joe Torre , Chairman
The Joe Torre Safe at Home Foundation, New York
· Jerry Tello , Director
Sacred Circles; National Latino Fatherhood and Family Institute, Hacienda Heights, Calif.
· Gabrielle Union, Advocate
Beverly Hills, Calif.
· Dr. Sujata Warrier, Director
New York City Program of the New York Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, New York
More information about the NAC and its members is available at www.ovw.gov.