Dear Mrs. Obama:
I am writing to you today because I respect you very much, and I know how important both the issues of Domestic Violence and the right of everyone to have Affordable Health Care are to you.
I want to introduce you to an amazing woman and advocate Susan Murphy- Milano. Susan is currently dying of Cancer due to the lack of Health Insurance. Everywhere she applied for help turned her down and she was informed that she did not qualify for their services. I know you agree that there is something terribly wrong when a country as great as ours can let this happen to anyone, yet alone someone who has devoted her entire life to saving the lives of others and without once thinking about what it could mean to her own.
Susan grew up in Chicago, the daughter of a 30-year veteran Chicago Police Detective and Violent Crimes Investigator Phillip Murphy. Susan’s father murdered her mother in 1989 and then turned the gun on himself committing suicide. His intent was to kill his daughter as well. On the way to the house to try to save her mother something made her take an unexpected turn on the way. This decision is the only reason Susan is alive today. Had she taken her normal route Susan would not be with us now! Susan lived a life of trying to keep her mother alive her entire life and after her mother was murdered she devoted her entire life to saving others.
This most amazing woman is now on her last days after putting up a good fight. I am writing you today because I know you care. I know you care about the women and children in this country, the state of our health care, and every person’s God given human right. It is not just women and children that Susan has saved; there is no gender bias when it comes to abuses towards another.
Susan is the leading expert on Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence, and at the time when she discovered she had Cancer she was already in stage 4. This all happened just as her lifelong dreams were coming true. Susan is the women who mentored Rev. Neil Schori , Stacy Peterson’s Pastor and taught him everything he knows about Intimate Partner violence. Together they created The Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit which is a legal document that can be used in court as legal testimony even if the victim is murdered or missing.
This tragic news about Susan came just as her lifelong work was getting known. Susan was getting invitations from law enforcement agencies all over the country to come and train Law Enforcement and first responders what to look for when they answer a call, or respond to a crime scene. She was preparing to start working at a University where she was given Carte Blanche and offered full use of the Universities resources to help her with her work. She did not apply to work at this University they came to her asking her to please come and head this project. Susan was offered her own Television Show which was scheduled to air this winter. Again she was approached by the producers she did not seek them they sought Susan. These are just a few of the triumphs that have a major impact in the field of Intimate Partner Violence! Susan was now in high demand all over the country. But her work was suddenly halted in its prime due to her health.
Susan had a good chance to recover had she had the treatment she needed. This is a disgrace and an embarrassment for this Country which I know you and the President both agree. I am so sorry that the President’s Health plan has been fought against and has not been put into place. This is something that may have saved not only the life of this amazing woman but could have saved countless other people both through Susan’s work and the health plan combined.
This is what Susan said when she made the announcement about her Cancer:
“My dreams and hard work are now becoming reality.
In early fall there will be a national announcement about the Intimate Partner Violence Institute with two major universities.
A national conference and training hosted by the Naperville Christian Church is scheduled for the first week of October on the Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit for law enforcement, prosecutors and first responders.
The Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit APP will be at the Apple Store on Monday July, 2, 2012.
Holding My Hand Through Hell will be released nationwide October 1, 2012.
Everything will still happen as scheduled”.
Susan Murphy Milano June 27 2012
Please check out these links and Google her name for more on Susan. I know you will love her as much as I do and as the countless women she has saved
Susan’s Cancer blog Conquering Cancer which she started to try to change the way society looks and Cancer treatment
Susan’s Main Blog Susan Murphy Milano’s Journal to educate the public on Intimate Partner Violence
Document the Abuse website for the Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit
Susan’s latest book “Holding My Hand Through Hell” is about her life and what it was like for her growing up in an abusive home. She wrote this book for the purpose of helping others who are living the same hell that Susan grew up living in. After reading this book people will know why Susan is the who she is.
Chicago Tribune article and interview with The Rev. Neil Schori.
Listen here to Rev. Schori interview after the trial of Drew Peterson
Susan Murphy Milano and her work in Chicago. Please watch this video and you will see the great work she has done in the past!
Thank you for taking the time to read this and listen to the interviews.
I would like to invite you to the Facebook prayer page for Susan. You will be in awe of the outpouring of prayers and thoughts of people whose lives were changed just by knowing her.
God Bless you and The President for all the work that has been done and is being done to make our lives better.
Amy J. Matthews
Warning signs to watch out for teen dating violence include: sudden loss of interest in activities, low grades, changes in appetite, changes in sleep patterns, loss of regular friends and drastic changes in clothing.
Often victims will wear long sleeves, long pants and scarves to hide bruises and marks. If you as a parent suspect that your teen is in an abusive relationship, encourage zero tolerance for inappropriate dating behaviors.
If you suspect that your teen is being violent to their dating partner, talk to them. Let the teen know that love is about respect. Sometimes it is difficult to realize that your child is being mean or violent. Do not allow aggressive behavior in the home. Talk to the teen about emotional abuse and how it is unacceptable in any relationship. You could say something like, “It bothers me when you yell at so-and-so.” Express concern and talk to the teen about appropriate behavior. You may even want to seek professional help for your teen.
Teen dating violence is a problem that parents can help prevent. Talk to teens about the different types of violence. Be alert for warning signs and let the teens know that you care. Most of all, show teens the appropriate way to behave by being respectful and caring towards other people.
Encouraging teens to have healthy relationships before they begin dating is important. Be aware and keep the lines of communication open with teens about their relationships.
Signs of an abusive relationship
There are many signs of an abusive relationship. The most telling sign is fear of your partner. If you feel like you have to walk on eggshells around your partner—constantly watching what you say and do in order to avoid a blow-up—chances are your relationship is unhealthy and abusive. Other signs that you may be in an abusive relationship include a partner who belittles you or tries to control you, and feelings of self-loathing, helplessness, and desperation.
To determine whether your teen relationship is abusive, ask her/him to answer the questions below. The more “yes” answers, the more likely it is that your teen may be in an abusive relationship.
Your Inner Thoughts and Feelings
- feel afraid of your partner much of the time?
- avoid certain topics out of fear of angering your partner?
- feel that you can’t do anything right for your partner?
- believe that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated?
- wonder if you’re the one who is crazy?
- feel emotionally numb or helpless?
Your Partner’s Belittling Behavior
Does your partner:
- humiliate or yell at you?
- criticize you and put you down?
- treat you so badly that you’re embarrassed for your friends and family to see?
- ignore or put down your opinions or accomplishments?
- blame you for his/her own abusive behavior?
- see you a property or a sex object, rather than a person?
Your Partner’s Violent Behavior or Threats
Does your partner:
- have a bad and unpredictable temper?
- hurt you, or threaten to hurt or kill you?
- threaten to commit suicide if you break up with him/her?
- force you to have sex?
- destroy your belongings?
Your Partner’s Controlling Behavior
Does your partner:
- act excessively jealous and possessive?
- control where you go and what you do?
- keeps you from seeing your friends or family?
- constantly checking up on you?
- excessive texting or calling you?
If your teen is afraid for her/his safety or has been assaulted by her/his partner please dial 911 or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-787-3224.
Take care and STAY SAFE!
- Paperback: 286 pages
- Publisher: Ice Cube Press
- ISBN#: 978-1888160673
- Foreword by Diane Fanning, Award winning true crime author of Mommy’s Little Girl
This poignant well-written book tells the story of a police officer’s family and a daughter’s quest for justice long after the heart-wrenching murder of her mother. Susan Murphy Milano embraces a legacy of unconditional love and faith to triumph over a life plagued with unspeakable abuse and pain.
Based on a true story, told with the flow of a novel, spiced with frank wisdom and with, Holding My Hand Through Hell encourages the reader to immerse themselves into this family s life and is an inspiration to become an advocate for change in this world we all share.
Holding My Hand Through Hell will incite discussion, debate, and heightened awareness about hope, survival, abuse, murder, and its impact on our society. In the end, it will leave readers both applauding this woman as well as wondering how she escaped, sometimes at the eleventh hour. Twenty years later, she has realized that God must have been holding her hand through hell, delivering her from the evils of her life in order to save others.
“Raw and riveting Holding My Hand Through Hell starts fast and never lets up. In this powerful memoir, author Susan Murphy Milano throws open her personal closet so that we see what drives this woman to tirelessly champion voiceless victims and the people who love them”…… Steve Jackson, NY Times best-selling author.
About Susan Murphy-Milano
SUSAN MURPHY MILANO is a specialist in intimate partner violence and works nationally with domestic violence programs, law enforcement and prosecutors providing technical and consulting services in “high risk” domestic violence and stalking related cases. Her principal objective is to intervene before a victim is seriously injured or killed. Utilizing a procedure which she devised, the Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit© Murphy Milano’s clients are all still alive.
SUSAN MURPHY MILANO is the author of DEFENDING OUR LIVES (Doubleday 1996), MOVING OUT, MOVING ON (Kind Living Press 2008), and TIME’S UP (Dog Ear Publishing 2010) which guide those in abusive relationships to a place of freedom and safety.
Susan’s quest for justice was instrumental in the passage of the Illinois Stalking Law and the Lauternberg Act. She has been prominently featured in newspapers, magazines, radio and television including: The Oprah Winfrey Show, Larry King Radio, ABC’S 20/20, Justice Files, E-True Hollywood, CNN, Sunday Today Show Profile, Women’s Day, Family Circle, US News and World Report to name only a few. She has frequently participated in guest media commentary panels on major news programs.
To learn more about Susan and her work, please visit the following sites:
Holding My Hand Through Hell
Book Tour Stops:
Thursday, October 4: Official Launch from Heartland Fall Forum with Jillian Maas Backman and Ice Cube Press Publisher, Steve Semken on radio show, Change Already!
Friday, October 5: Writing is a Crime, Diane Fanning (wrote the foreword)
Saturday, October 6: Shattered Lives with Donna R. Gore LISTEN LIVE
Monday, October 8: Truth, Justice, and All-American Allergen-Free Apple Pie, Heidi Hiatt
Tuesday, October 9: NeilSchori.Com Pastor Neil Schori
Wednesday, October 10: Losing Austin, Finding Myself, Anita Sullivan
Thursday, October 11: Safe Relationships Magazine, Sandra L. Brown, MA
Friday, October 12: Statement Analysis: Peter Hyatt
Tuesday, October 16: Crime Wire with Dennis Griffin LISTEN LIVE
Wednesday, October 17: Justice Cafe
Thursday, October 18: Danielle Pierre
Friday, October 19: Washington Times, Paula Carrasquillo
Monday, October 22: PamelaChapman.Biz Pamela Chapman
Tuesday, October 23: The Roth Show Blog, Dr. Laurie Roth
Wednesday, October 24: AnnyJacoby.Com, Anny Jacoby
Friday, October 26: Doc Bonn Blog, Dr. Scott Bonn
Monday, October 29: Cynthia Caron
Tuesday, October 30: DonnaGore.Com, Donna R. Gore “LadyJustice”
Thursday, November 1: Crime, She Writes, Cathy Scott
Friday, November 2: BurlBarer.Net, Burl Barer
Monday, November 5: Survivors Justice, Patricia McKnight
Despite the significant progress made in reducing violence against women, young women continue to face the highest rates of dating violence and sexual assault. In the last year, one in 10 teens has reported being physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend. One in five young women has been sexually assaulted while in college. In response to these alarming statistics, Vice President Biden launched the 1 is 2 many campaign last year. This campaign focuses his longstanding commitment to reducing violence against women specifically on teens and young women ages 16-24. By targeting the importance of changing attitudes that lead to violence, and educating the public on the realities of abuse, the Obama Administration is leading the way to stop violence against women before it begins.
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden join with Eli Manning, Jeremy Lin, Jimmy Rollins, Evan Longoria, David Beckham, Joe Torre and Andy Katz in this PSA to raise awareness about dating violence.
Thank you to all of the participants in the video for sending a loud message that must be heard by all.
Take care and STAY SAFE!
As Domestic Violence Awareness Month begins I have been thinking of what awareness means to our families, friends and communities.
For hotline and court advocates who respond to crisis calls and provide ongoing support to victims, awareness means seeing the pain that family violence creates for those caught in its grip, as well as celebrating the courage it takes for individuals to rebuild their lives and regain the sense of self after enduring emotional or physical abuse from a loved one. For many community members, awareness may mean seeing friends or family members struggle with this issue now or from the past and getting information about how to help them. For young people it may mean learning about what to expect in a healthy intimate relationship through programs such as “Save the Date” or other programs being offered. Communities and Advocates all around are working diligently to bring awareness of and to prevent and end domestic violence.
The message of advocacy and awareness deserves a wider audience as there is a mix of responses to the epidemic. Those who interact and support the cause know the importance of the work that is being done and are committed to helping organizations continue to provide high quality free services in English and Spanish. Unfortunately, many people are unclear about who the domestic violence agencies are, where they are and what they do. Domestic violence awareness extends beyond the specific month designated for this purpose.
Ways for you to contribute and get involved are:
- Let your friends and businesses you patronize know what Domestic Violence is, who and what the agency in your community are and what they do. Thank those who support your local agency.
- Involve your church or favorite civic group in this work through an educational or fundraising event.
- Make your voice heard in the local media and at election time to advocate for resources for survivors and supportive legislation.
- Stop by your local Domestic Violence agency and meet their wonderful staff.
- Volunteer your time or resources to help support community education, office or hotline needs.
- Serve on a board committee to help with events, fundraising and other activities.
It is imperative that we work together toward the effort, explore ways that we can work together to make our families and communities more peaceful and nurturing for everyone.
I extend many thanks to all who give their time, knowledge and spirit to this work and mission.
Check out (Google them if necessary) events in your community and consider attending:
Take Back The Night
(an international rally and march that is organized in local communities with the purpose of unifying women, men, and children in an awareness of violence against women, children and families.
Beards BeCAUSE – Clean Shaven Party
Beards BeCAUSE is a unique, fun, and successful fundraiser while raising awareness about the issue of domestic violence and making a positive impact and contribution to United Family Services – Shelter For Battered Women
Annual Candlelight Vigil & Memorial
Honoring statewide DV-related homicide victims this past year
Domestic Violence is a Men’s Issue
Join other men (and women) step up to take a pledge turning the tide against violence of women and girls.
Change is Gonna Come
Screening & Community dialogue – this event will screen a play performed at the Lincoln Theater in Washington, DC written by Vickie Evans capturing domestic violence in the church. An open community dialogue will follow.
Check out DV Awareness Project for ideas on DVAM events & resources.
The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence statewide theme for North Carolina’s Domestic Violence Awareness Month is “Domestic Violence Affects Everyone: Everyone Can Make A Difference” North Carolina calendar of events
Presidential Proclamation — National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, 2012
NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH, 2012
- – - – - – -
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
For far too long, domestic violence was ignored or treated as a private matter where victims were left to suffer in silence without hope of intervention. As we mark the 18th anniversary of the landmark Violence Against Women Act, authored by Vice President Joe Biden, we reflect on how far we have come. We have made significant progress in changing laws and attitudes, providing support to survivors, and reducing the incidence of domestic violence. But we also know that we have not come far enough, and that there is more work left to be done. During National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we stand with all those who have been affected by this terrible crime, recognize the individuals and groups who have stepped forward to break the cycle of violence, and recommit to putting an end to domestic violence in America.
Despite considerable progress in reducing domestic violence, an average of three women in the United States lose their lives every day as a result of these unconscionable acts. And while women between the ages of 16 and 24 are among the most vulnerable to intimate partner violence, domestic violence affects people regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, race, or religion. Tragically, without intervention, children exposed to such violence can suffer serious long-term consequences that may include difficulty in school, post-traumatic disorders, alcohol and drug abuse, and criminal behavior.
My Administration remains committed to getting victims the help they need, from emergency shelter and legal assistance to transitional housing and services for children. We are also working to stop violence before it starts. Last year, agencies across the Federal Government held town hall meetings nationwide to promote men’s roles in ending violence against women. Through Vice President Biden’s 1is2many initiative, we built on that progress earlier this year by releasing a public service announcement that features professional athletes and other role models speaking out against dating violence. This April, I directed leaders throughout my Administration to increase efforts to prevent and combat domestic violence involving Federal employees and address its effects on the Federal workforce. Since August, the Affordable Care Act has required most insurance plans to make domestic violence screening and counseling available as a preventive service for women — without co-payments, deductibles, or other cost-sharing. And most recently, we developed a new initiative to reduce domestic violence homicides through high risk screening and linking victims with services. Moreover, my Administration looks forward to working with the Congress to strengthen and reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act.
While government must do its part, all Americans can play a role in ending domestic violence. Each of us can promote healthy relationships, speak out when we see injustice in our communities, stand with survivors we know, and change attitudes that perpetuate the cycle of abuse. We must also ensure that survivors of domestic violence know they are not alone, and that there are resources available to them. I encourage victims, their loved ones, and concerned citizens to learn more by calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE, or by visiting www.TheHotline.org.
This month, let us renew our efforts to support victims of domestic violence in their time of greatest need, and to realize an America where no one lives in fear because they feel unsafe in their own home.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim October 2012 as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. I call on all Americans to speak out against domestic violence and support local efforts to assist victims of these crimes in finding the help and healing they need.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-seventh.
A Victim’s safety always needs to come first and foremost.
Take care and STAY SAFE!
VICE PRESIDENT JOSEPH R. BIDEN TO DISCUSS ISSUE OF DATING VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT AFFECTING TEENS AND YOUNG ADULTS, LIVE ON “THE VIEW,” TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27
Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie, executive producers of the ABC’s Daytime Emmy® Award-winning talk show, “The View,” announced that Joseph R. Biden, the 47th Vice President of the United States, will be the special guest, live, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon, ET). The Vice President will focus on the threat of dating violence and sexual assault that continues to exist for teens and young adults across the country. The Vice President’s appearance is part of “Red, White & View” continuing the show’s commitment to political guests and discussions.
The author of the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), Vice President Biden has led the effort to combat violence against women for over 20 years. He continues the cause today leading the fight from the White House.
Over the past year, in response to the high rates of violence and abuse that continue to face young women under the age of 24, Vice President Biden has refocused his long standing commitment to reducing violence against women specifically on teens and young adults. Under the Vice President’s leadership, the Administration has undertaken a wide range of new and innovative efforts to address the issue. Just last week, in a video message released via Twitter and YouTube, Vice President Biden launched the “1is2Many” project calling on high school and college-aged students to share their ideas on preventing dating violence and sexual assault at schools and on their campuses.
Dating abuse isn’t always as obvious as bruises and beatings. In fact, if you don’t know any better, some of the most common forms of relationship abuse might seem like the way that boyfriends and girlfriends are supposed to act.
That’s why it’s so important that you learn the signs of abusive relationships as soon as you start dating. If any of the signs below are true for your relationship, get help. The following signs can be applied to abused males as well by girlfriends. Victimization DOES NOT discriminate.
1. He Constantly Checks In on You
If your sweetie’s attentive and asks you about your life, that’s fantastic. But if he constantly calls you and expects a full report on where you’ve been and who you’ve been with, then something more sinister’s going on.
2. He Lies to You
Relationships can’t survive unless you trust each other, and if your partner abuses that trust by lying to you, it’s a relationship that isn’t worth keeping. A couple of white lies are forgivable. Lying regularly, or lying about important stuff, is absolutely not.
3. He Won’t Let You Talk to Other Guys
Don’t stand for this form of relationship abuse. You’re allowed to talk to anyone of any gender you want. If your sweetie is suspicious of something, he should have a mature conversation with you about it, but he’s not allowed to control your behavior.
4. He Threatens to Hurt Himself
When someone tells you something like, “I’ll kill myself if you break up with me,” they’re using fear and guilt to manipulate you. Any threat should be taken seriously, so speak to a parent or counselor about it. But you don’t have to play along.
5. He Loses His Temper Quickly
Everyone gets mad sometimes, and that’s okay. But if your sweetie snaps at you over the tiniest things and blames you for things that aren’t your fault, then something’s wrong (and it’s not you).
6. He Embarrasses You in Public
No one who loves you (or even likes you a lot) should ever make you feel bad about yourself. Doing it in public – by calling you names or making fun of you when other people are watching – is especially cruel, and you don’t have to stand for it.
7. He Forces You to Have Sex
Sex doesn’t just mean intercourse. It can mean a whole range of sexual activity, including oral sex or even just touching. If your partner forces you to do anything physical that you don’t want to do, get out of the relationship.
8. He Keeps You Away From Your Friends
Abusers are pretty smart. They know that if your friends found out the truth, they’d tell you to get out of the relationship lickety-split. By pushing your friends away, abusers are trying to protect themselves. Don’t let them.
9. He Looks at Your Phone
No one – not even the love of your life – has the right to monitor your calls and texts. And you’re allowed to be in contact with whomever you want (even your exes). If your sweetie disagrees, he’s trying to control you, and that’s a form of abuse.
10. He Does Anything That Scares You in Any Way
This could mean physical violence, the threat of violence, harsh words or dangerous behavior of any kind. Bottom line: if you’re scared to be around someone – even someone you love – don’t be around them any more. Break it off right away.
In the realm of teen dating violence, Susie promotes the concept that healthy teen dating relationships will translate into strong and healthy adult relationships. Susie strives to educate both teens and adults about the seriousness of teen dating violence. She specializes in speaking about Teen Dating Violence and Healthy & Safe Dating. She conducts workshops, keynotes, trainings, and seminars on issues specifically related to teens and their relationships. Related topics to Teen Dating Violence include:
- setting boundaries,
- safe dates,
- the Dating Bill of Rights,
- Cycle of Violence,
- early warning signs of teen dating violence,
- teen empowerment,
- the differences between healthy and potentially destructive dating relationships.
Because most domestic violence relationships that end in fatalities started in high school, she feels it a vital necessity to reach out to teens and work toward prevention and safety.
In the context of domestic violence, Susie aims to educate listeners on what Domestic Violence is, how the abuser uses power and control, and what tools the abuser uses to maintain their power and control. She also discusses the myths surrounding Domestic Violence and answers the question, “Why don’t you just leave?” Susie can combine these elements into one presentation or highlight a single topic for an in-depth presentation, keynote, or workshop.
In both Domestic Violence and Teen Dating Violence, Susie speaks with compassion, approachability, knowledge, and energy. Her presentations are layered with a truly touching, amazing, and powerful story about “Jessica,” a friend that came into her life and ultimately survived a harrowing escape from the abuser bent on killing her.
Susie earned a BA in Speech Communication from the University of Washington. She has spoken to a myriad of audiences on varying topics related and unrelated to Domestic Violence and Teen Dating Violence. These topics include business communication, teaching public speaking workshops, giving scientific presentations to area junior high and high school science classes and in an academic capacity. Most recently Susie has spent her time speaking to local high school and junior high school students and community groups about Teen Dating Violence and prevention. She has also been a participant of Toastmaster’s International.
Over the last 6 years Susie has consulted with business owners about organization and taught seminars on effective communication and public speaking.
Susie regularly spends time helping with domestic violence related activities at Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County and at Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse. She has had affiliations with LeTip International in the capacity of Vice President and President of her local business networking chapter.
Susie frequently volunteers with organizations that serve domestic violence victims and their families. Currently she lends a hand with youth support groups and at her local shelter. Susie also works with victims of sexual assault and abuse by serving as an Advocate with Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse where she responds to local ER’s and provides advocacy for sexual assault victims and advocacy via a 24-hour emergency hotline.
More about Susie Kroll:
- BA speech communication (info transfer and comm not speech therapy) from University of WA
- BS Zoology w a marine emphasis at University of WA
- Masters in counseling psychology (to be completed 2014).
- Completed training as sexual assault/child sexual assault advocate from Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse. Was an advocate for victims in county’s ER’s.
- Completed training with Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County to be a volunteer in the confidential shelter, kids support groups, and as speaker for Teen Dating Violence for the last 2 years…primarily in high school and junior high schools.
- Participant in Toastmasters International.
- Hobbies include spending time w husband and our 2 golden retrievers, singing, and gardening/landscaping.
Topics for Speaking Engagements, Workshops and Events:
- Teen Dating Violence and Healthy Relationships
- Technology, Teens, and Safety with their Cyber Reputations
- Domestic Violence/Teen Dating Violence in Pop Culture and the Media
Connect with Susie Kroll online:
Susie is also a contributing writer to the victim’s rights blog “Time’s Up!”
If you would like to schedule Susie Kroll for your next event, please fill out the form below or contact ImaginePublicity at 843.808.0859 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Take care and STAY SAFE!
Johanna Orozco, of Cleveland, a victim of teenage violence, spoke to a crowd of local counselors, teachers and teens at the YWCA on North Park Avenue in Warren. Orozco’s ex-boyfriend shot her in the face in 2007.
A state law signed last year by then-Gov. Ted Strickland and sponsored by former state Rep. Sandra Stabile Harwood of Niles mandated that public schools begin to teach students in grades seven-12 about teen-dating violence starting this school year.
Implementation of the law, known as The Tina Croucher Act, hasn’t gone perfectly, said Cheryl Tarantino, executive director of the Warren domestic-violence shelter Someplace Safe.
Because the Legislature didn’t provide any funding to carry it out and because the law didn’t specify what kind of education is required, some schools are doing almost nothing, Tarantino said.
On Thursday, Someplace Safe and the 13 other Northeast Ohio organizations concerned about dating violence brought three of Ohio’s best-known teen-violence experts to the YWCA on North Park Avenue to train local counselors, teachers and teens on the subject.
Johanna Orozco of Cleveland may be the best living example of the consequences of teen-dating violence.
When Orozco, 22, first stepped to the microphone, it was apparent why people listen to her.
Not only is her face disfigured from a shotgun blast she suffered in 2007 when her ex-boyfriend shot her at close range, but she speaks in a dynamic way and relates to teens.
Orozco’s story, which has been told numerous times on national television and in a seven-day series in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, was that she was the victim of a tall, dark, handsome, intelligent and violent teen named Juan Ruiz Jr., Orozco’s boyfriend of two years.
Orozco had known Ruiz since the second grade. They started dating in early 2005, when Orozco was a sophomore in high school. Ruiz shot Orozco in March 2007.
The court sentenced Ruiz to 27 years in prison in September 2007 after he pleaded guilty to raping and attempting to kill Orozco. Ruiz was 17 at the time.
But during her talk Thursday, Orozco pointed out that her relationship with Ruiz was anything but violent in the beginning.
Four to five months into the relationship, Ruiz became jealous and started to tell Orozco what she could wear and who she could talk to. He accused her of cheating and began to call her every three to five minutes on the phone.
Her friends and family noticed that she had changed — becoming isolated from them. She lied about the reasons why.
A year into the relationship, Ruiz hit her for the first time, so she broke up with him, only to change her mind a short time later.
The relationship got worse over the following year — slapping, squeezing and hitting her in places where others wouldn’t notice. She continued to lie to friends and family about the source of the injuries because “I loved him. I cared about him,” she said. Eventually, she also feared him.
About a month before Ruiz shot her, she left him, but Ruiz found her and raped her at knifepoint, which she reported to someone at school, which led to juvenile charges being filed against Ruiz.
Ruiz was let out of juvenile custody on house arrest and stalked Orozco for two weeks before shooting her as she sat in her car.
The blast removed half of her lower face. Bone from her leg was used to rebuild her jaw.
The other speakers were Elsa and Jim Croucher of Monroe, near Cincinnati, the parents of Tina Croucher, who was killed by an ex-boyfriend in 1992.
Elsa Croucher said her daughter’s boyfriend was a good-looking football player who regularly hit her daughter, leaving bruises.
Tina Croucher lied about how she got the bruises, but eventually her family found out, and Tina stopped seeing him.
“Then he really caused problems,” Elsa said, describing “horrible messages” that he left on voice mails, and times he went to the family’s church and to Elsa’s workplace.
“Four days before Christmas, he shot her in the head and killed himself in her room,” Elsa said.
The Crouchers were instrumental in getting the Legislature to pass The Tina Croucher Act.
Published: Fri, February 25, 2011 @ 12:06 a.m.
By: Ed Runyan
Photo by: Robert K Yosay
Take care and STAY SAFE!