domestic violence

PA House of Representatives / legis.state.pa.gov

A Democratic state representative is circulating a proposal that has prompted some concern from domestic violence advocates.

Representative Kevin Haggerty’s measure would require drug and alcohol tests for certain people who file for Protection from Abuse orders.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Often the most dangerous time for a person in an abusive relationship is the moment they decide to leave an abuser. An app from the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh can help people make a plan to get away and find a safe place to go.

The center launched the RUSafe app in 2014 as a way to connect domestic violence victims with help hotlines, advocates and shelters. It also included a self-assessment, asking questions about physical abuse and violence at the hands of partners to determine if people are in an unsafe situation.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh's civic, corporate and community leaders spoke out against domestic violence Thursday at the fourth annual Father's Day pledge. The event was an initiative of Southwest PA Says No More, a coalition of organizations that fight against harassment and assault.

Kristy Trautmann, executive director of the FISA Foundation, says this year has been unprecedented for women coming forward and sharing experiences of assault. The local organization advocates for the rights of women, girls and people with disabilities.

Office of Governor Tom Wolf

A package of bills aimed to protect victims of domestic violence in Pennsylvania has been signed into law. 

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

A new Pennsylvania law is in place to help guide judges setting bail for defendants accused of domestic abuse.

AP

By the time Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was shot and killed on a Memphis balcony in April 1968, Pittsburgh's black community had been simmering for years over the once thriving 100-acre section of the Lower Hill District that city leaders had leveled to build the Civic Arena. 

Kathleen Davis / 90.5 WESA

Hundreds of Pittsburgh’s city employees will be eligible to take paid "safe" leave starting July 3.

Under an executive order announced by Mayor Bill Peduto on Tuesday, the policy aims to accommodate workers who face intimate partner violence and need to find safe housing, file Protection from Abuse orders and obtain necessary care.

 

The directive notes that many must take time off work to meet these needs.

The Greater Pittsburgh Coalition Against Violence

The Greater Pittsburgh Coalition Against Violence is working to get more people to commit to the safety of women and girls. The organization is hosting a community-wide summit Saturday focusing on gender-based violence.

Summit coordinator Lois McClendon said violence against women and girls is often overlooked or minimized, and often disproportionately impacts women of color and transgender women of color. She said “it seems not to get the kind of play in the media or even the concern among the public.”

Senate OKs Bill To Toughen Gun Laws In Domestic Abuse Cases

Mar 21, 2018
Carolyn Kaster / AP

The Pennsylvania Senate is giving unanimous approval to a bill to force people with a domestic violence ruling against them to more quickly forfeit their firearms.

The Senate's 50-0 vote Wednesday sends the bill to the House. Domestic violence- and gun violence-prevention groups support the bill. It passed after changes negotiated by gun-rights groups.

Matt Rourke / AP

A Pennsylvania Senate committee is advancing a bill to force people with a domestic violence ruling against them to more quickly give up their firearms.

The Judiciary Committee passed the bill unanimously Monday.

Under the bill, people convicted of domestic violence would have 48 hours to give up their firearms to a law enforcement agency, a federally licensed firearms dealer or their lawyer. Under current law, people convicted of domestic violence have 60 days and can give their guns to a relative, friend or neighbor.

Keith Srakocic / AP

This winter’s saturating rains and repeated freeze-thaw cycles have led to damaged roofs, thousands of potholes and landslides across several steep city hillsides. What are Pittsburgh leaders doing to help the 20 families displaced by Mother Nature, and how can they better address infrastructure needs?

90.5 WESA's Margaret J. Krauss joins the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Bob Bauder to discuss.

Coming up next....

Kathleen J. Davis

A woman who worked at a Penn State satellite campus apparently was shot dead by her estranged husband in a university parking lot on Wednesday, and the man then killed himself, police said.

Matthew Hatfield / AP Photo

Two months ago, the parents of University of Pittsburgh student Alina Sheykhet found her dead inside her Oakland apartment. The 20 year old had been raped and murdered, allegedly by her former boyfriend, against whom she'd filed a protection from abuse order weeks earlier.

Pennsylvanians Increasingly Turning To New Protective Orders

Nov 27, 2017
Sophia Tareen / AP, file

Pennsylvanians are increasingly turning to a two-year-old Pennsylvania law that expanded protective orders for victims of sexual violence and intimidation, and state lawmakers are debating whether to make additional improvements to the system.

Francisco Seco / AP Photo

A bipartisan team of three state senators has introduced legislation that would make relocation easier for victims of domestic assault within public housing.

Sen. Art Haywood (D-Philadelphia and Montgomery County), Sen. Camera Bartolotta (R-Beaver, Greene and Washington Counties) and Sen. Judith Schwank (D-Berks County) are sponsoring the bill.

Rod Waddington / flickr

In the middle of the night, Saybah Harris received a text message.

It was a photo of an ambulance with a simple description: It's Foday.

Her only son.

Miki Yoshihito / Flickr

Advocates for stronger gun laws and domestic violence prevention are pushing for the passage of a bill that would restrict access to firearms for people convicted of domestic abuse. They say the current law has big loopholes.

In any domestic violence case involving a gun in Pennsylvania, law enforcement can demand the abuser turn the firearm over to police or a third party within 60 days. That third party can range from a licensed gun dealer to a friend or family member to safeguard the firearm.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Jeremiah’s Place is celebrating three years of service as western Pennsylvania’s only crisis nursery this month.

Located inside the Kingsley Association in Larimer, the facility provides 24-hour care for infants and children, who can stay for a few hours or even days when their parents are unable to provide help themselves.

The Women's Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh

Once an automobile showroom, the building that houses the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh will soon have a little more room to grow.

The organization serves approximately 6,000 women, children and families each year, but has run out of room to house them.

“We have been over capacity every night for a few years,” said Board Chair Sara Davis Buss. “In fact, in 2016, we turned away over 700 people who needed our services.”

Virginia Alvino Young / 90.5 WESA

Ride-sharing service Uber announced Tuesday it will fund all rides for women to the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh. 

Free rides will also be provided to legal, medical and other appointments for those staying in the shelter through the $10,000 donation from Uber.  

John Beale / AP

The Joint State Government Commission is recommending changes to a decades-old domestic violence protection law in Pennsylvania.

The group is pushing for updates that would, among other things, make it more difficult for abusers to access firearms.

BarnImages.com / Flickr

An app could be key in helping track sexual assaults and domestic violence.

Dr. Elizabeth Miller, Chief of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at UPMC Children’s Hospital, said she and a team of researchers have developed an app called TIPS, or Trauma Informed Personalized Scrips, to help health care professionals identify women who are victims of domestic abuse or sexual violence. 

PennDOT / AP, file

Last week, 47- year-old Kevin Ewing kidnapped his estranged wife at gunpoint. At the time, Ewing was under home confinement on charges he held 48-year-old Tierne Ewing captive and assaulted her for nearly two weeks in June and July.

Following Tierne Ewing’s abduction on Aug. 30, Washington County and state law enforcement officials fanned out around Findley Township to search for them. The search ended that night when Kevin Ewing shot Tierne and himself as state troopers approached a barn where he had taken her.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

About 30 men, mostly coaches and athletic directors, at the Sewall Center at Robert Morris University this week were asked one important question: "Who here was ever taught about consent?"

No one raised his hand.

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Domestic abuse victims in Pennsylvania will no longer have to wait for as long as two years to get a divorce from spouses convicted of abuse.

Gov. Tom Wolf signed legislation on Thursday which makes two major changes to how courts deal with domestic violence divorce proceedings.

David Amsler / Flickr

 

One of the many victims of Pennsylvania’s budget impasse is domestic violence organizations that rely on government funding.

With the impasse well into its fourth month, organizations that rely on state or federal funding aren’t getting either, and there are fears that some may have to temporarily shutter their doors. That means victims of domestic violence may not get the help they need.

http://www.hearth-bp.org/

A transitional housing and services program for those left homeless by domestic violence is accusing Allegheny County of withholding more than half a million dollars in federal funding.

Shaler Township-based HEARTH has filed suit in federal court, seeking to force the county Department of Human Services to release the U.S. Housing and Urban Development funds. HEARTH Executive Director Judith Eakin said DHS is solely responsible for the hold up; HUD has agreed to support the organization’s designation as a victims’ service provider.

Using Title IX To Engage Students In Deeper Discussions

Jul 21, 2015
teenlife / flickr

Higher education institutions are using Title IX as a jumping off point to have discussions with students about issues of harassment, stalking, dating violence and domestic abuse. Libby Rosemeyer, assistant director of Tittle IX compliance at Point Park University helps listeners understand the relevancy of the law and its impact on the Pittsburgh community as a whole.

Casey Chafin / 90.5 WESA

  Local leaders and elected officials recited a pledge vowing to put an end to domestic assault and sexual abuse at a meeting Friday in the courtyard of the Allegheny County Courthouse.

Attendees spoke about why they choose to fight against domestic violence and signed a petition, but admitted they know words on a page won't begin to end the battle against domestic abuse.

June 21 is Father’s Day, and a local group says celebrating Dad should also mean taking a stand to end domestic violence.

The Father’s Day Pledge to End Gender Violence encourages people, particularly men, to sign a pledge that indicates their commitment to the prevention of domestic and sexual violence and abuse.

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