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Category Archives: Violence

New Data About Teen Relationship Abuse…

Every couple of years, we update our fact sheet on teen dating violence and forced sex when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Adolescent and School Health releases their national, state, and local Youth Risk Behavior Survey results. This survey includes a lot of key information that is relevant to those who work with youth in Chicago and Illinois.

Full 2013 survey results can be found here.

Our updated 2013 fact sheet about teen relationship violence and forced sex can be downloaded HERE (PDF).

For the first time, the YRBS has broken out the dating violence questions into physical and sexual dating violence. This is distinct from the forced sexual intercourse question.

Physical Dating Violence
Among the 73.9% of students nationwide who dated or went out with someone during the 12 months before the survey, 10.3% had been hit, slammed into something, or injured with an object or weapon on purpose by someone they were dating or going out with one or more times during the 12 months before the survey (i.e., physical dating violence).

The prevalence of physical dating violence was higher among female (13.0%) than male (7.4%) students.

The prevalence of physical dating violence was higher among Hispanic (10.4%) and Black (10.3%) than white (9.7%) students; and higher among white female (12.9%), black female (12.3%), and Hispanic female (13.6%) than white male (6.4%), black male (8.2%), and Hispanic male (7.0%) students, respectively.

Across 38 states, the prevalence of physical dating violence ranged from 7.0% to 14.8% (median: 9.6%). Across 20 large urban school districts, the prevalence ranged from 7.4% to 16.8% (median: 9.4%).

Sexual Dating Violence
Among the 73.9% of students nationwide who dated or went out with someone during the 12 months before the survey, 10.4% of students had been kissed, touched, or physically forced to have sexual intercourse when they did not want to by someone they were dating or going out with one or more times during the 12 months before the survey (i.e., sexual dating violence).

The prevalence of sexual dating violence was higher among female (14.4%) than male (6.2%) students.

The prevalence of sexual dating violence was higher among Hispanic (11.5%) and white (9.8%) than Black (8.9%) students; and higher among white female (14.6%) and Hispanic female (16.0%) than white male (4.8%) and Hispanic male (6.7%) students, respectively;

The prevalence of sexual dating violence was higher among white female (14.6%) and Hispanic female (16.0%) than black female (8.8%) students and higher among black male (8.9%) than white male (4.8%) and Hispanic male (6.7%) students.

Across 31 states, the prevalence of sexual dating violence ranged from 7.8% to 13.8% (median: 10.5%). Across 17 large urban school districts, the prevalence ranged from 8.0% to 13.0% (median: 9.9%).

Read the fact sheet HERE (PDF) to get information specific to Illinois and Chicago.

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2014 in Data, Resources, Sexual assault, Violence

 

Our Reporter’s Toolkit in the News…

Claudia Garcia Rojas, former coordinator and current volunteer with the Taskforce, has an op-ed in Policymic today. She shares some of the lessons she learned while researching our media toolkit titled Reporting on Rape and Sexual Violence: A Media Toolkit for Local and National Journalists to Better Media Coverage.

She writes:

During my time as Coordinator of the Chicago Taskforce on Violence Against Girls & Young Women, I spent approximately a year researching rape and sexual violence reporting trends for the production of a media toolkit titled Reporting on Rape and Sexual Violence: A Media Toolkit for Local and National Journalists to Better Media Coverage.

On a spreadsheet, I compiled what those of us who do advocacy work would deem “bad” stories in one column, and “good” stories in another.

Bad stories are those where the reporter employs victim-blaming statements (from the New York Times: “She would hang out with teenage boys at a playground, some say”), witness testimonies that are one-sided (from ABC 20/20: “She had her arm wrapped around me and one hand on my chest. It just felt like she was coming on to me”), and superfluous details that shame the victim (from the New York Times: “They said she dressed older than her age, wearing makeup and fashions more appropriate to a woman in her 20s”). A bad story lacks accuracy, fairness, and objectivity.

On the other hand, a good story is written from an objective or trauma-informed angle. It’s the kind of story where a reporter opts for accurate language instead of opting for provocative words. Salon’s Mary Elizabeth Williams affirms this, writing “When the media uses the word ‘sex’ within a story about something where there are alleged victims of assault, it’s a semantic failure on an epic scale. It diminishes crime. It sensationalizes it. It removes the distinction between a normal, consensual act and violence. Sure, you could say that sex is an element of those stories. But you’d be missing the part about force and pathology.”

Read the rest here.

 
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Posted by on April 30, 2013 in Media, Sexual assault, Violence

 

Black Girls Under Fire: A Workshop and Discussion – June 1

We’ve reached capacity for this event. Thanks for your interest. We’ll post notes about the event here later.

blackgirlsunderfire2

Register HERE by May 20th only if you are CERTAIN that you will be able to attend. Space is LIMITED.

 
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Posted by on April 21, 2013 in Events, Incarceration, LGBTQ, Racism, Violence

 

Reframing the Discourse on Teen Pregnancy: Resource List

Last September, we hosted (along with our allies) a two-day conference about violence in the lives of Chicago girls and young women.  As part of this event, Katy Groves & Chez Rumpf offered a workshop about our need to reframe the discourse on teen pregnancy.

Below is a description of their workshop:

Title: Baby College for All
Facilitators: Katy Groves (Youth Service Project) and Chez Rumpf (Center for Urban Research and Learning, Loyola University and Project NIA)

This workshop seeks to shift the framework around teen pregnancy and parenting. Pregnant and parenting teen girls often are pathologized as deviant young people who have become pregnant as a result of their personal deficiencies and problems. As such, services targeting these young women often attempt to “fix” or “reform” them through individual-level interventions. This workshop will engage participants in imagining ways to de-stigmatize teen pregnancy and parenting. Rather than frame teen pregnancy as a life-ending event that shoulders young women with insurmountable barriers, we will consider how to create structural supports for young mothers and how to cultivate a culture that places a high value on children.

Using a popular education approach, facilitators will lead participants through an activity to identify the current stigma and pathologizing discourse about teen pregnancy and to investigate the causes and consequences of this stigma. Through another activity, facilitators and participants will explore the historical evolution of this stigma. The workshop will close with a visioning exercise to develop concrete strategies to foster a sense of communal responsibility for children.

At the end of the workshop, participants will leave with:
• an understanding of the historical development of current discourses about teen pregnancy
• a critical assessment of these discourses
• ideas about how to create supportive environments for teen parents and their children

You can find an excellent resource list that they handed out to workshop participants here.

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2013 in Public policy, Racism, Resources, Violence

 

Fact Sheet: Teen Dating Violence and Forced Sex in Illinois & Chicago, 2011

Last summer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Adolescent and School Health released the 2011 national, state, and local Youth Risk Behavior Survey results. This survey includes a lot of key information that would be relevant to those who work with youth in Chicago and Illinois.

You can find the full results here.

Mariame has compiled an updated fact sheet about teen dating violence and forced sex in Illinois and Chicago. You can download the fact sheet HERE.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2013 in Data, Sexual assault, Violence

 

March 20: The Invisibility of Police Violence Against Women & Girls of Color

Join us on March 20th from 6 to 8 p.m. as we partner with Project NIA to organize a discussion about the invisibility of police violence against women and girls of color. The event will take place at the Pop-Up Just Art Space, 729 West Maxwell Street. RSVP to policeviolence2011@gmail.com

Discussions and considerations of police brutality often focus on men as the primary victims of this violence. We know however that women are also the targets of violence by law enforcement.

Witness the following disturbing scene of a young women being roughly handled by police officers as she protested the killing of Kimani Gray just this Wednesday night.

On March 21, 2012, Rekia Boyd, a young African American woman, was with her friends enjoying an unusually beautiful Chicago March day. The four friends decided to walk to the store up the street. In order to do so they had to cross through an alley. Dante Servin an off-duty detective with the Chicago Police Department had recently moved into this gentrifying neighborhood.

Detective Servin was reportedly upset with late night noise behind his home across from Douglas Park and from his car had told a group of four people to quiet down. There were words, an object raised, and the detective fired his gun repeatedly.

Antonio Cross was hit in the hand. The object he had raised was a cell phone. Boyd was hit in the head and pulled off life support the following day.

Antonio Cross was charged with assaulting a police officer and is presently awaiting trial. The State’s Attorney asked for a continuance this past January because they were “not ready,” the new trial date is set for March 13, 2013 at 9am at 3150 Flournoy. Update: Charges against Antonia Cross were dropped.

Detective Dante Servin has been placed on administrative duty and no charges have been filed against him.

Join several speakers including Mariame Kaba (Project NIA, Chicago Taskforce on Violence against Girls and Young Women)Crista Noel (Women’s All Points Bulletin), and Shira Hassan who will discuss the invisibility of police violence particularly against women and girls of color.

This event is part of a series called Black & Blue that examines policing, violence and resistance.  For information about the other events, click here.

 
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Posted by on February 18, 2013 in Events, Police, Racism, Violence

 

New Resource: Media Toolkit for Local and National Journalists

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                  October 24, 2012

THE CHICAGO TASKFORCE ON VIOLENCE AGAINST GIRLS & YOUNG WOMEN PUBLISHES A MEDIA TOOLKIT FOR LOCAL AND NATIONAL JOURNALISTS TO BETTER MEDIA COVERAGE

Contact: Claudia Garcia –Rojas: chitaskforce@gmail.com

CHICAGO:  The Chicago Taskforce on Violence Against Girls and Young Women publishes a Media Toolkit to disseminate to members of the press. Reporting on Rape and Sexual Violence: A Media Toolkit for Local and National Journalists To Better Media Coverage addresses common issues stemming from how media currently structures news around rape and sexual violence, and how journalists can better report on these issues. The Toolkit provides concrete facts about the problem of violence against girls and young women; suggestions about issues to be covered regarding violence against girls, including the Taskforce’s recommendations of use of language, ways to end violence, and information about key organizations. This Toolkit is not only necessary for helping address the ever-deepening stigma around rape and sexual violence, but a critical and timely resource to address the pervasiveness of rape culture in society. Mariame Kaba, Co-Founder of The Chicago Taskforce states, “Media portrayals about sexual and domestic violence in the lives of young women contribute to raising public consciousness about these serious and important issues.  It is important that these portrayals be accurate and well-informed.  We believe that this toolkit will help to inform those who are responsible for telling these stories.”

Sharmili Majmudar, Executive Director of Rape Victim Advocates adds that,  “One of the results of recent attention in the media on sexual violence is a greater opportunity to have a public dialogue and replace often victim-blaming myths with education.  However, if the reporting itself is inadvertently based on those myths, not only is the opportunity lost, but the victim-blaming continues unchecked and the public remains uninformed.

Through our work at Rape Victim Advocates, we see how language is crucial in creating and sometimes reinforcing decades-old cultural beliefs about sexual violence.  This Toolkit provides timely, easy to use guidelines that allow journalists to honor their ethical obligation to be unbiased and write with accurate language about sexual violence, whether they are a crime beat reporter or an investigative journalist.”

The Chicago Taskforce on Violence Against Girls & Young Women was founded to develop a comprehensive, citywide approach to ending violence against girls. Established in fall 2009, the Taskforce unites stakeholders from across Chicago to address the question: What conditions need to exist locally and statewide to end violence against girls and young women?

The Taskforce has become a central space to bring together practitioners and policy advocates with the goal of developing a comprehensive strategy to end violence against girls and young women.   The Taskforce has released papers and data analyses to develop the field and draw attention to the issue, brought together hundreds of organizational representatives in discussions, raised the issue with public officials such as the Cook County Women’s Commission, and begun to build a stronger infrastructure for supporting girls’ safety in Chicago. Additional data analyses and reports can be found at http://chitakforce.org.

 
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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Media, Resources, Violence