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What Are My Rights? Teen Dating Violence and the Law

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Presentation on theme: "What Are My Rights? Teen Dating Violence and the Law"— Presentation transcript:

1 What Are My Rights? Teen Dating Violence and the Law
Bronwyn Blake, J.D. Founder and Senior Attorney: Teen Justice Initiative Texas Advocacy Project

2 Texas Advocacy Project: Teen Justice Initiative
Ortralla Mosley Law school, Trella, Break the Cycle, almost 4 years serving Texas teens. Seen a lot of trends… 20/20: Violence and Dating: 4/1/05

3 Domestic Violence → Dating Violence
What do we picture when we think of intimate partner violence? Used to be images like these. Grown women. Wives. What interventions did they access? Self defense and hiding… Jennifer Lopez in Enough Julia Roberts in Sleeping with the Enemy

4 Domestic Violence → Dating Violence
What do we picture now? Younger women. Girlfriends. Female violence. What interventions did they access? Rhianna Carrie Underwood in Before He Cheats

5 Domestic Violence → Dating Violence
One-third of teens report experiencing some kind of abuse in their romantic relationships, including verbal and emotional abuse. Carolyn Tucker Halpern, Ph.D. et al., "Partner Violence among Adolescents in Opposite-Sex Romantic Relationships: Findings from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health." American Journal of Public Health 91 (2001) 1680. Females ages are more vulnerable to intimate partner violence than any other age group – at a rate almost triple the national average. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Special Report: Intimate Partner Violence and Age of Victim, (Oct. 2001, rev. 11/28/01). Legal services are the only service that correlates with a decrease in domestic abuse. Farmer & J. Tiefenthaler, Explaining the Recent Decline in Domestic Violence, CONTEMPORARY ECONOMIC POLICY, vol. 21, pp (April 2003). For instance, Protective Orders are as much as 80% effective in preventing future violence. Holt, Victoria L., Kernic , Mary A., Lumley , Thomas, Wolf , Marsha E., and Rivara , Frederick P., Civil Protection Orders and Risk of Subsequent Police-Reported Violence, JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, V. 288 (5), August 7, 2002, What do we know now? Most common victims are female teens. Best intervention: legal.

6 Overview: Teen Legal Options
Legal Services Overview Criminal Options Civil Options School Options Resources Agenda for the hour…questions anytime. Lots of trends and practical resources.

7 1. Legal Services Overview
Working with Teens: Safety First Build trust Ask specific questions Act fast Extra help with decision making Be flexible Give examples from these handbooks

8 1. Legal Services Overview (continued)
Preliminary Legal Issues: Minor parties? Legal definitions includes dating? Mandatory reporting? Cunningham, Karen and Catherine F. Klein, Esq. “Teen Dating Violence,” The Impact of Domestic Violence on Your Legal Practice (2nd Edition). The American Bar Association Commission on Domestic Violence.

9 2. Criminal Options Make a statement File charges: Emergency Orders
Assault Stalking Sexual Assault Emergency Orders Victim Compensation

10 3. Civil Options Civil Domestic Violence Protection Orders
Civil court orders that a victim can request from the court to get protection from an abuser. The protection order can order an abuser to: stop harming the victim, stop having contact with the victim, or stop contacting the victim at work, school, or at the victim’s children’s school or daycare. Civil vs Criminal

11 3. Civil Options (continued)
Problems with Teen Access: Definitions: Dating? Stalking? Can a minor file? Filing fees? How long do they last? NOTE: older study, picture not totally accurate. Explain why these things are problems “Dating Violence: Can Teens Access Protection Orders?” Cheryl Green and Lara Murray Mohlhenrich, National Center for Victims of Crime, 2005.

12 3. Civil Options (continued)
Do I qualify? Type of relationship Type of Abuse Age How do I get a Protection Order? What can I ask For? How much will it Cost? Explain the realm of possibilites

13 3. Civil Options (continued)
Case studies: Virginia California Texas

14 3. Civil Options (continued)

15 3. Civil Options (continued)

16 3. Civil Options (continued)

17 4. School Options School Policies Regarding Dating Violence:
Definitions Developing a Response Prevention and Training Interventions in the Schools Safety Planning Record Keeping Explain the realm of possibilites

18 4. School Options (continued)
Case Studies: Massachusetts New York Texas Rhode Island California Nebraska

19 4. School Options (continued)
Stay away agreement

20 4. School Options (continued)
Sexual Harassment Hostile Hallways Eight in 10 students (81 percent) experience some form of sexual harassment during their school lives Girls are more likely than boys to experience sexual harassment ever (83 percent vs. 79 percent) Title IX

21 5. Resources General National Info: Break the Cycle’s
CDC’s Liz Claiborne’s “I saw Dave yelling at Megan in the hall so I asked him to stop”

22 5. Resources Victim Assistance: National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline TTY

23 Presenter Information:
Bronwyn Blake Founder and Senior Attorney, Teen Justice Initiative Texas Advocacy Project (512) office (512) fax PO Box 833 Austin, Texas 78767 Texas Dating/Family Violence Legal Line SAFE

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