NFL Toughens its Stance on Domestic Violence

(USA TODAY)

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell admits he was wrong on the Ray Rice decision, and Goodell took an important step Thursday towards showing the league is serious about cracking down on domestic violence as well as sexual assault.

In a lengthy letter sent to every NFL owner on Thursday, Goodell announced enhanced policies and discipline under the personal conduct policy that will result in a six-game suspension for a first offense related to domestic violence or sexual assault and an indefinite ban for a second offense committed by any NFL personnel.

Goodell has drawn harsh criticism since the announcement last month that Rice, the Baltimore Ravens running back, would be suspended just two games for striking his then-fiancee at a New Jersey casino and being caught on camera dragging her unconscious body out of an elevator. Continue reading

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Six Steps to Safe Environments to Ask for Help

When the Human Resources director called to describe the female employee’s resistance to discussing the abusive husband who kept showing up at the workplace; making his presence in her life achingly obvious with emails, phone calls and vigils in the parking lot.

“She won’t talk with me.” said the director.  “She clams up.”  They asked me to meet with the woman on their behalf, thinking that a neutral outsider could encourage her to help.

So we sat down, the Human Resource Director, the employee and me.  And that’s where I got my big surprise.  The Director ordered the woman to meet with me.  The tone of her voice was angry, and insistent as she gave her a directive, “You will talk with Ms. Angelo until she says you can go!”  Ouch.  Quite frankly that answered all my questions as to why this woman was so reluctant to talk. Continue reading

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Let’s Talk About Mental Health

I am not a mental health expert but as a motivational speaker, I am constantly focusing my attention on matters of the heart and the head and where the heart’s function in our romantic lives may never be understood, the head needs some help.  Unfortunately, the stigma surrounding mental health still exists but as I can relate, we have come light years in our perception of persons with a disability and we need to do the same for this incredibly important subject.

Frankly, I have always felt that the power of our attitude is underestimated and that isn’t just me singing from my own hymnal.  In case you don’t know, I was born without arms in 1960 and pretty much written off by experts, even to where my birth family gave me up before I was a week old.  But as my story goes, I was taken in by Hilda and Jack Law who were part-time foster parents and would become the only Mom and Dad I would ever know. Continue reading

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Denise Brown to Present at Penn State in the Fall

Known around the world for her advocacy and domestic violence work, Denise Brown is scheduled to present to students, staff and the community at Penn State on October 6, 2014.

Since early 1995, Ms. Brown has traveled to various states speaking on domestic violence addressing university student bodies, men in prison and in batterers’ treatment programs, women at risk, church groups, and various educational and legislative forums.  She has helped raise funds for local shelters all across the country with her appearances, and has assisted in the success of a major project called the Vine System, an automated victim notification service of the release of batterers from jail or prison. Continue reading

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Tanya Brown on Robin Williams Suicide & Destigmatizing Depression

Is Robin Williams the face to depression and suicide as Rock Hudson is to AIDS and Nicole Brown Simpson is to domestic violence? I hope so.

I hope that members of our country’s communities understand the critical nature of addressing mental illness. We need to promote mental health to manage and/or prevent mental illness. And, yes, depression and anxiety disorders are mental illnesses and need to be addressed and destigmatized. Mental illness is not the person standing on the street corner licking the lightpost and talking to himself. It is those like me, like Robin and many others who are afflicted with depression and other illnesses. Continue reading

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