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Oct 30, 2014 This month, the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) released its latest report, Intimate Partner Violence in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ), and HIV-Affected Communities in the United States in 2013. The report provides detailed data on LGBTQ and HIV-affected, as well as data on police, medical, and other responses to them. This report builds on a growing but limited body of research on domestic and sexual violence in...

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Oct 23, 2014 Earlier this month, my colleague Ryan Shanahan and I represented Vera at the Aspen Institute Ascend Network’s ThinkXChange. This network, of which Vera is a member, connects 58 organizations from across the United States “to influence policy and practice changes that increase economic security, educational success, social capital, and health and well-being for children, parents, and their families.” Specifically, the Ascend Network is advancing a two-...

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Oct 17, 2014 Several weeks ago, I attended the memorial service for Eddie Ellis, who was, among many things (including a son, a father, a mentor, and a leader), a formerly incarcerated man and the founder of the Center for NuLeadership on Urban Solutions. I first met Eddie in 2007, not long after he wrote his well-known “language letter.” Called “An Open Letter to Our Friends on the Question of Language,” the letter was a challenge to abandon the dehumanizing language...

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Oct 3, 2014 The New York City Department of Corrections’ (DOC) recent commitment to ending the use of solitary confinement for juveniles by the end of 2014 is an important change that recognizes the particularly harmful impact of segregation on adolescents (starkly illustrated in this report by the Board of Corrections).   The DOC’s decision also recognizes that there are alternative ways to maintain order in our jails and prisons. While solitary confinement is...

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Sep 29, 2014 The Unlocking Potential: Perspectives on Education in Prison blog series—as part of Vera’s Pathways from Prison to Postsecondary Education Project—explores postsecondary education in prison and its benefits—during and after incarceration—through the unique experiences and insight of former students, educators, nonprofit leaders, corrections officials, reentry experts, and more.  Todd Butler is the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Jackson College, which...

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Sep 19, 2014 On Tuesday, September 9, I attended a celebration at the National Archives in Washington, DC hosted by Vice President Joe Biden to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). It brought together advocates from across the country who are dedicated to helping domestic violence and sexual assault victims, survivors, and their children.   Beginning in the 1970s and continuing on through the 1980s and early 1990s, advocates...

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Sep 5, 2014 At a distance of nearly a month, the shooting death of Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, Missouri, the deeply troubling response to it, and the ongoing commentary have a certain back-to-the-future quality, reminding us of how stuck in the past we still are, despite real progress in matters of race. Much remains to be done—and not only in Ferguson—to combat the source of distrust and enmity between police and community, particularly African American...

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