Over the past twelve months, New York has spent a record amount to combat domestic violence (domestic violence). Numerous awards, defenders from husbands and boyfriends, cost almost $ 300 million. Most of these funds were transferred by non-profit organizations, which call domestic violence almost the main problem of the Big Apple.
Despite the fact that to protect women, New York officials and human rights activists have done a lot, most of the victims still do not know how to get qualified help.
According to Internet surveys, only 7% of women have information about shelters, social workers, psychologists and lawyers provided by the city. All the others in the case of tragedy call in 911. Police, however, do not always pay due attention to the affected (especially in areas with high crime rates).
«I called the police eight times a week and asked to arrest my husband, who constantly smokes marijuana and walks around the apartment with a knife,» wrote Monica, a Brooklyn resident in Bedford-Stivesvant. — Each time the dispatcher answered that all the officers were busy and I should call only when my husband decided to use a knife. I must be killed or wounded for an emergency call to the police. »
The case described by Monica, unfortunately, is typical. The police come only when the apartment «is about to be murdered.» It is on this topic that women’s advocates insisted on opening a telephone line 1-800-621-HOPE. It works 24 hours a day, and dispatchers speak ten different languages (including Russian). Calls are experienced psychologists who do not aspire to get rid of a person as soon as possible. Their main task is to listen to a woman and give advice.
«I talked with the dispatcher on the other end of the wire for an hour and a half,» says Zoey, a Bronx resident. — I really felt better in my heart. And I’m very pleased that I did not have to deal with the police. They would have arrested my husband without further ado, and he already has two convictions. »
Like Zoe, many women are afraid of arresting a husband or boyfriend, from whose actions they suffer. Today, the New York police actively cooperate with the Office for Customs and Immigration Laws (ICE). Therefore, the arrest of an illegal or even a green card holder may result in deportation. Last year, for example, a resident of Chinatown reported to the 911 dispatcher that her husband had hit her with a remote control from the TV, and she was bleeding. The officers immediately arrested the aggressor, placed him in the deportation center, three months later the «ICE» sent him back to China, forbidding ever returning to America.
Do not believe it, but the victim of violence tried to judge the Police Department (NYPD). Illegal, as it turned out, was one working man in the family with five young children. She could not receive full state benefits because she herself lived in the United States without documents.
In addition to the incredibly popular telephone line 1-800-621-HOPE, in New York there is an Alternative to Shelter (Alternative to temporary shelter) program.
The program is managed by the Office of Resource Allocation, specifically the Department for Combating Domestic Violence (Office for Domestic Violence). The essence of this article is to prevent the offender from approaching the house (apartment) where he lived together with his victim.
Alternative Shelter should not be confused with the Order of Protection (Order of Protection), which is issued by the judges. HRA works faster, and more reliable (at least, the program participants believe).
«When my husband, in a state of intoxication, took me by the hair and hit my head against the wall several times, I realized that it’s time to stop our relationship once and for all,» says Amelia, who lives in the Spanish Harlem (Manhattan). — I picked up my bag, left the house and realized that I had nowhere to go. All the shelters in the district were overcrowded. »
Weeping Amelia was helped by an occasional passer-by, in a mobile phone, which turned out to be the number Office of domestic violence — 1-212-331-4500. Two hours later, the woman returned to the apartment, and the perpetrator was banned from approaching the building until special court decisions.
«I gave this saving number to all my acquaintances,» Amelia says. — I can not believe that I was helped so quickly. This is the most useful program, financed by the city. »
It is especially worth noting that New York women began to better understand the term «domestic violence». Especially it concerns representatives of various immigrant communities — Spanish, Muslim, Russian and Chinese in the first place. Five years ago, many women called the police and said that they were afraid of their husbands (boyfriends), but they had no compelling reasons for fear. Such victims simply did not have the words to convey the deep psychological experiences. Today, «domestic violence»