Getting Over O.J.: Real Truth Stories About Domestic Violence

By Christine Cupaiuolo — November 21, 2006

By now you’ve heard that the O.J. Simpson book deal/interview special is off, thank goodness.

Just when it seems that the surrealism that is O.J. could be dismissed again — hopefully this time for good — now there’s talk of News Corp.’s role in offering hush money to the families of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.

But let’s turn our attention to a less sensational story: Women’s Silent Pleas Are Heard by Seattle Facility

Molly M. Ginty writes about A Place of Our Own, a transitional housing facility in Seattle for deaf domestic violence survivors that organizers say may be the first of its kind anywhere. Up to 19 deaf women and their children can live onsite with support staff and services. Special features include lighting systems that signal children’s cries, doorbells, fire alarms and telephone rings.

“Deaf victims deserve a housing program that is designed specifically for them and where they are among other deaf victims in an environment that is deaf-friendly,” said Marilyn Smith, the facility’s director.

Smith, who is deaf, helped found the Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services, which is helping to develop similar projects in 15 communities nationwide; another two dozen-plus communities are on a waiting list.

“This program fills a critically important niche,” says Nancy J. Bloch, CEO of the National Association of the Deaf, based in Silver Spring, Md. “It serves as an exemplary model for others across the nation to emulate.” […]

Clients already have success stories to share. There is the boy who no longer slaps his mother to get her attention, as his father did. There is the progress made by Faith Stinson and her son, who are launching a new life together.

“I’m undergoing counseling to work through the changes that have affected both of us,” says Stinson. “This is a place where both of us can feel secure and safe.”

The story is part of Women’s eNews excellent series about dangerous trends and innovative responses to domestic violence — stories, in other words, that deserve the mass attention a certain batterer keeps getting.

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