Code red dating
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In terms of risk to women and girls, the country is at Code Red.
If the victim doesn't figure out the con after the first request for cash, the crook will keep milking the relationship for as much as he or she can get.
While we can applaud how far we have come, it is imperative that policymakers and residents acknowledge that, for the more than 153 million women in the country, the threat is real, and escalating.
Sh'reen Morrison had been on an online dating site for only a few weeks before she realized that something was seriously wrong with the man who had been actively pursuing her by text message and email.
Despite years of women's advancement in workplaces and educational institutions, we must acknowledge that we have not conquered the underlying attitudes that fuel gender-based violence.
George Sodini's pointed attack on women at a gym in Pennsylvania, along with his blog postings outlining his anger at women in general, demonstrated an extreme and fatal strain of an attitude that courses through much of America's popular culture.
NDVH also found that, in a five year study, women whose male partners experience two or more periods of unemployment are almost three times as likely to be victims of intimate partner violence as were women whose partners were in stable jobs.
While the repercussions are most acute and dangerous for women and children, the negative impact extends onto the ledger sheets of companies and states, with some simply unable to sustain the cost. Arnold Schwarzenegger, in an attempt to deal with California's crippling budget problems, summarily eliminated million of funding that supported the state's domestic violence shelters, a massive blow to the more than 90 organizations that provide life-saving assistance to victims of violence.
Tragically, it is precisely during such times that services for women are less likely to get funds they need to meet the demand.
Right now, all around the country, funding for domestic violence shelters and services is shrinking just as the need for help is skyrocketing.
Still, this is only a fraction of the funds necessary to sustain these services for the millions of individuals and families in need.
With the current state of the economy, the rising levels of frustration, and persistent attitudes that cast women as deserving targets, the reauthorization of VAWA, due for consideration in 2010, provides an important opportunity to look again at what continues to be a national crisis.
While George Sodini’s actions were extreme, the sentiments he held are still disturbingly commonplace.