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MN Alliance Against Violence Trainings

October 31, 2013 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Events

MAAV LogoOn behalf of the MN Alliance Against Violence, we are pleased to invite you to participate in a FREE 4-hour training to learn about a program that engages communities to end violence and oppression. This opportunity is possible because of generous financial support received from the Department of Public Safety – Office of Justice Programs. We also want to acknowledge Greater Twin Cities United Way, whose funding support of the MN Alliance since 2011 has been instrumental in advancing the goals of the Alliance.

MN Alliance Against Violence has entered into a partnership with Connect. The training and curriculum that Connect created, helps to lay the groundwork for positive, healthy relationships between coworkers, neighbors and community members through shared goals, shared knowledge and mutual respect.

Connect Trainings will be held on the following dates and locations:

  • November 15 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. held in Bloomington (hosted by Cornerstone)
  • November 19 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. held in Faribault (hosted by Hope Center)
  • December 6 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. held in Blaine (hosted by Alexandra House)

To register, call Deb Schroeder at Connect: 320.251.7203 or

Become part of engaging your community – our communities – by attending one of these training sessions as well as passing this opportunity along to others whom you know may be interested. Together, we take action for change.

QUESTIONS – contact Pat Wagner, Project Manager for the MN Alliance: 651.554.0357 or


October 31, 2013 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Uncategorized

Not Completely Emotionally Damaged, Just Enough To Be Normal

Reposted from United Women Blog

For the past few days, I have sat in front of my computer, trying to decide what I would write for this blog post; staring at a blank screen, wondering where to even begin. I start this story in the middle, not for convenience, but for you to understand my current thought process; the thoughts that seem to roll through my head as if to taunt my sanity. Issues that I have felt since I can remember are heightened and brought to the surface. Last year, I shared a little bit of my story from my childhood. The memories I had of my father and how he treated my mother and me. This time around, I wanted to go in to more of the feelings that are tied to abuse. No time like the present seems more fitting for me to convey the emotions that have been ripening from the milestones of my life.

I consider myself a strong individual, one who relies on my own opinions as my source for self-worth. Too often, this isn’t the case and I place my value on the actions of others. I allow my happiness to be dictated by someone else. I know this is horrible and self-destructive, but I really believe that I am not the only one. In fact, I would bet that most everyone is this way; you just may be at a different level than others. There’s a constant need to feel accepted by the ones you love; whether it be a girlfriend/boyfriend, spouse, child, or parent. When that love is reciprocated with betrayal, rejection, or even violence, it makes a lasting impression that can take years to overcome, if you do ever get over it. This is really something that I am trying to overcome. I have to make an actual effort every day to stop and tell myself that I am the one that is in control of my emotions and my happiness. If I don’t take the time to make my own self happy, no one else is going to. I’m sick to death of people, who are not me, having so much power over my current state of mind. Of my mood. I can’t control the mistakes of others or the hurt that they caused, but I can control how I deal with it. I know, I know… At this point I sound like a really cheesy motivational poster that you had hanging in your high school. It’s so cliché, and it’s so true. Read the rest of this entry →

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

September 26, 2013 in Archive, Domestic Violence

Domestic violence doesn’t discriminate

Reposted from the National Network to End Domestic Violence Blog

We feel safer when we think domestic violence happens somewhere else to someone else.

Little girl covering her eyesIn reality, domestic violence occurs in our neighborhoods and in our families. Anyone can be a victim of domestic violence, regardless of race, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or economic status. Abusers control and terrorize our daughters, bosses, sisters, friends, and even our sons – who are most often abused by their male partners and sometimes their female partners. While I work to end domestic violence for so many reasons and in honor of so many people, rarely a day goes by when I don’t connect the work I do to the life and experiences of my aunt; a highly respected doctor and beloved mother. Read the rest of this entry →


July 29, 2013 in Archive, Child Abuse, Domestic Violence, Public Policy

Bush Fellow Wants to Start ‘Blameless Conversations’ for Social Change

Reposted from MinnPost by Cynthia Boyd

Dave Ellis, Bush Fellow

Dave Ellis, Bush Fellow

Dave Ellis aims to start a serious conversation among African-American men and boys that he says will jump-start social change.

He is one of 10 persons from around the region recently named Bush Fellows by the Bush Foundation and awarded funds to implement or expand programs to change and strengthen their communities. Others will be named in July and September.

Ellis, whose history includes 23 years working in the Minnesota correctional system in jobs from prison guard to director, wants to engage African-American men in what he calls blameless conversations of “how their behavior is impacting how their children grow up.’’ He now has established Dave Ellis Consulting. Read the rest of this entry →


December 18, 2012 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Uncategorized

With Impunity has received the MSP Magazine 2012 Best Local Documentary and MN Women’s Press named it one of the 2012 Changemakers. The program will be rebroadcast in April as part of Sexual Violence Awareness Month.

2012 Changemaker: With Impunity

Reposted from Minnesota Women’s Press

“Potentially a breakthrough shift in the way abuse and violence against women is discussed by looking through the lens of men,” is how the “With Impunity” documentary has been described.

Ellen Pence and Michael Paymar thought progress had stalled after working together for 30 years on gender-based violence. They had written books, created curriculum, and lectured and led trainings nationally and internationally. They could point to a lot of successes-changes in laws, in law enforcement and in criminal justice. Read the rest of this entry →

Examining the Realities & Options for Ending Violence

September 20, 2012 in Archive, Domestic Violence

With Impunity: Men & Gender Violence

Beliefs about manhood that allow men to exploit and hurt women with impunity are ingrained in our culture. “With Impunity” engages the thinking of leading historians, sociologists and practitioners to examine our past, cultural realities and options for ending men’s violence against women.

Half The Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity For Women Worldwide
Oct. 1 starting at 8 p.m.
Introduced by George Clooney, and traveling with intrepid reporter Nicholas Kristof and celebrity advocates (America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union and Olivia Wilde), HALF THE SKY presents women and girls who are living under some of the most difficult circumstances imaginable — and fighting bravely to change them. Their intimate, dramatic and immediate stories of struggle reflect viable and sustainable options for empowerment and offer an actionable blueprint for transformation. The series was filmed in 10 countries: Cambodia, Kenya, India, Sierra Leone, Somaliland, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Liberia and the United States.

The Making of With Impunity

September 19, 2012 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Uncategorized

Michael Paymar, MN House of Representatives

Why would anyone write a documentary about men’s violence against women? After working in the battered women’s movement for over three decades, my colleague Ellen Pence and I wanted to capture the lessons we had learned by exploring the struggles, history, successes and challenges of ending gender-based violence.

I met Ellen in 1981 when she was organizing the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project (DAIP) in Duluth, Minnesota. At this time in history, battered women’s activists from around the country recognized the injustice–the very institutions that were supposed to be protecting victims from violent crimes were failing miserably. Law enforcement rarely arrested abusers unless the violence was egregious. Prosecutors didn’t seek convictions because they didn’t think they could win. And judges frequently perceived these cases as private family matters. In this bleak environment, women battered by husbands and boyfriends were forced to adapt to lives where fists, kicks, broken bones, and sexual assault were a way of life. The terror of wife beating was occurring with impunity.


September 19, 2012 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Public Policy

Minnesota agencies rely on anti-violence act that’s in limbo

Reposted from Star Tribune

Congress reconvened Monday with a host of issues likely to be loudly debated, from jobs to the environment to health care. Let’s hope they raise their voices about violence, too.

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), created to protect women from domestic and sexual violence, has flown through periodic reauthorizations in both houses with bi-partisan support since its creation in 1994. Read the rest of this entry →


May 17, 2012 in Archive, Child Abuse, Domestic Violence, Events

Blogger Asks: What’s it going to take?

The new research report from Prevent Child Abuse America was recently released and puts the cost of toxic stress (or child abuse and neglect) experienced by children in this country at a staggering $80 billion dollars per year. Several studies have come out in recent years with numbers ranging from $80-124 billion dollars per year and are inclusive of paying for the consequential program costs associated with child abuse and neglect.

With child welfare reporting close to 3.5 million children per year for the maltreatment of children, what should our society’s response be? If a virus suddenly started taking the lives of children worldwide there would be a national outcry for a cure; money would be poured in to research; communities would mobilize in an effort to halt the spread of the disease.

And yet, there’s a child abuse pandemic right here in America that we could invest a fraction of that $80 billion dollars to create healthy environments for children but we keep diverting funds to intervention after the crisis has already hit.

We know it’s far more expensive to treat diseases after they occur rather than preventing them in the first place. The same dynamic exists here when it comes to child abuse and neglect.  How many lives must be lost? How much money do we need to spend on emergency room health care?  I wonder what, exactly, it’s going to take? Read the rest of this entry →

Crime After Crime

March 26, 2012 in Archive, Domestic Violence, Events, Uncategorized

The 2012 Minneapolis Jewish Film Festival, running through April 1, showcases a diverse range of films from effervescent French romance, frivolous comedy and touching family drama to politically engaged personal documentaries, including Crime After Crime.

This powerful documentary follows the course of Deborah Preagler’s dramatic legal battle. Imprisoned for over a quarter century in connection with the murder of a brutally abusive boyfriend, Debbie finds her only hope for freedom in an unlikely pair of rookie attorneys (one and Orthodox Jew) with no background in criminal law. Convinced that they can free Debbie in a matter of months, her attorneys soon discover corruption and politically driven resistance that extends the case for years. Their investigation ultimately attracts global attention, and takes on profound urgency when the case becomes a matter of life and death. This film tells an unforgettable story of the relentless quest for justice and the endurance of the human spirit.

Directed by Yoav Potash | USA, 2010 | 93 minutes | English